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Adult-use cannabis dispensaries in Massachusetts that have been temporarily closed for the past two months as part of emergency orders to shut down nonessential businesses will be allowed to offer curbside pickup beginning Memorial Day.
Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker discussed his four-phase plan to reopen businesses in the state, one of the top five in the U.S. hardest hit by the COVID-19 pandemic, during a press conference May 18. The plan is to reopen the economy slowly in phases, and as part of the first, retailers in the state can offer curbside pickup starting May 25.
As the coronavirus spread across the country in March, and stay-at-home orders began to go into effect, every state with a regulated cannabis system allowed weed sales to continue in some form, deeming medical-marijuana businesses essential during the pandemic, along with groceries and pharmacies. This, The New York Times declared, was “official recognition that for some Americans, cannabis is as necessary as milk and bread.”
Lost recreational marijuana sales in Massachusetts stemming from forced store closures already could amount to $40 million among the state’s cannabis retailers, underscoring business owners’ need to be strategic about their operations during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Massachusetts adult-use marijuana retailers, which were forced to close on March 24 by the governor, might be missing out on nearly $2 million in daily sales.
Five cannabis dispensaries and a medical marijuana patient seeking to open a recreational dispensary sued Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker for his decision to order them closed as part of an emergency order aimed at slowing the spread of the new coronavirus.
The lawsuit was filed Tuesday in Suffolk Superior Court and seeks a preliminary injunction that would allow the state's 43 recreational marijuana shops to reopen. Baker classified the dispensaries as "nonessential businesses" and ordered them to close at noon on March 24.
Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker was hit with a suit Wednesday by several recreational cannabis dispensaries and a medicinal marijuana patient who claim his executive orders shutting down the stores during the COVID-19 pandemic are crushing their businesses and hurting public health.
Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo (D) says she’ll make another attempt to legalize marijuana in the Ocean State next year.
In an appearance on WPRI-TV’s Newsmakers program, the governor said she recently discussed the cannabis issue during a lunch with Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont (D) and Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker (R), and she left feeling encouraged to pursue the policy change.