Maine pushes the target date for adult-use marijuana sales back by 3 months, and lowers its projected sales tax revenue for the fiscal year that ends June 30.
Maine is planning to have its first recreational marijuana shops open in June, three months later than expected. State budget forecasters are banking on a robust kickoff, however, estimating $5 million in sales by the end of the month.
Maine is “very close” to issuing the first round of conditional recreational business licenses, said Erik Gundersen, the director of the Office of Marijuana Policy. It has received 197 applications so far; 80 of which have been deemed complete enough for regulatory review.
But a conditional state license is just the first step in a three-stage licensing process. The applicant must obtain local authorization, which can take anywhere from two weeks to a year depending on the municipality, before the business can return to the state to obtain a final active license, Gundersen said.
Maine won’t issue active licenses until it has a testing lab ready, with all its licenses and certifications, to run the health, safety and potency tests required under state law, Gundersen said. Currently, four labs are considering whether to enter the Maine market, but only one is close to being fully licensed. [Read more at Portland Press Herald]