Hawaii Attorney General Paves the Way for Recreational Marijuana Plans

Attorney General Anne Lopez has proposed a comprehensive plan designed to overcome hurdles that have blocked recreational marijuana legalization in Hawaii for years , according to a local news site

Currently, Hawaii only allows medical marijuana. The attorney general’s plan would encourage the development of a retail recreational marijuana industry while still protecting the medical dispensaries, the news site states. This is a similar plan of action that other U.S. states have taken when legalizing recreational cannabis. 

Lopez’s 294-page plan includes:

  • A 10% cannabis sales tax and a 4.25% excise tax
  • Grants and other support mechanisms to transition legacy operators into the regulated market
  • Establishing a regulatory agency to oversee the program, as well as enforcement, social equity provisions and product testing

“The attorney general has done a really good job pulling together all of the different input and providing a comprehensive bill,” House Judiciary Chair David Tarnas told Hawaii News Now.

In the past, Lopez has opposed legalization and raised many doubts about public safety. But after lawmakers challenged her to embrace the issue, she started working up this legalization roadmap, the news site states. 

If the legalization is approved, Lopez told Hawaii News Now that she hopes to see adult-use retailers in operation 18 months after the approval.