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Why New Jersey isn’t starting legal marijuana sales on 4/20

When the New Jersey Cannabis Regulatory Commission announced the start date for recreational marijuana sales in the Garden State last week, you could almost hear the collective frustrated sigh of thousands of cannabis consumers:

Why not 4/20?

So close, yet so far. New Jersey will start adult-use cannabis sales Thursday — just one day after the unofficial marijuana holiday of 4/20. Adult marijuana users will be able to purchase up to an ounce of cannabis at dispensaries, without a medical marijuana card.

With that, any hopes of lighting up in celebration on 4/20 with legal weed were stubbed out like a spent joint on the pavement on lot at a Camden Phish show. And all because of logistical concerns, a CRC spokesperson told The Inquirer.

“Selecting 4/20 for opening day would have presented unmanageable logistical challenges for patients and other buyers, surrounding communities, and for municipalities,” said Toni-Anne Blake, communications director for the CRC. “Regulators and industry representatives agreed it was not feasible.”

The CRC did not respond to requests to elaborate on the logistical challenges that prevented recreational sales from starting on 4/20, or for estimates on potential tax revenue the state may be forgoing by starting sales the following day. But part of the reasoning may have to do with concerns about supply shortages, said DeVaughn Ward, senior legislative council for the Marijuana Policy Project. [Read more at The Philadelphia Inquirer]

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