Marijuana Regulations and Information

This information pertains only to marijuana for adult use and does not provide guidance on the medical use of marijuana program regulated by the Department of Public Health or the hemp program to be regulated by the Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources. The Medical Use of Marijuana Program transferred to the Cannabis Control Commission as of December 23, 2018. The Commission has published guidance with specific recommendations to assist municipalities in creating equitable cannabis policies, as well as a number of other helpful guidance documents regarding host community agreements, farmers, and other topics, which may be found here: https://mass-cannabis-control.com/guidancedocuments/.

Background on 2016 & 2017 Laws on Marijuana for Adult Use in Massachusetts

On November 8, 2016, Massachusetts voters voted 53% in favor of a ballot initiative known as “Question 4” authorizing the limited adult use of marijuana and the licensing of marijuana establishments, amongst other things. The ballot initiative became Chapter 334 of the Acts of 2016 and created the “Regulation and Taxation of Marijuana Act, G.L. c.94G (“2016 Marijuana Act”).

On July 19, 2017, the Massachusetts Legislature passed a bill (H.3818) to amend Chapter 334 and the law it created, G.L. c.94G, as well as create additional laws relating to adult and medical use of marijuana. The bill became Chapter 55 of the Acts of 2017 (“2017 Marijuana Act”) and was signed by the Governor on July 28, 2017. The 2017 Act built upon the foundation of the 2016 Act, creating a five-person Cannabis Control Commission, a twenty-five person Cannabis Advisory Board, as well as a hemp program to be run by the Department of Agricultural Resources. It also placed limits and restrictions on municipal control over the sitting of marijuana establishments. The deadlines created by the Legislature in December 2016 remained unchanged.

In October 2017, the newly-formed Cannabis Control Commission held listening sessions throughout the Commonwealth. The Cannabis Advisory Board was also convened in October 2017 and broke into four subcommittees: Public Safety, Public Health, Market Participation and Marijuana Industry, which issued recommendations to the Commission regarding proposed regulations on December 5, 2017. On December 21, 2017, the Cannabis Control Commission approved draft regulations. Public hearings were held throughout the Commonwealth and written comments were accepted through February 15, 2018. On March 7, 2018, the Commission promulgated final regulations at 935 CMR 500. Those regulations were published in the Register on March 23, 2018.

The Commission assumed operational control of the medical use of marijuana program from the Massachusetts Department of Public Health on December 23 of 2018. As of that date, Chapter 369 of the Acts of 2012 is no longer in effect. Please refer to Chapter 94I of the Massachusetts General Laws for statutory questions. The Department of Public Health’s regulations on medical use of marijuana, 105 CMR 725.000, are no longer in effect. The Commission has promulgated regulations on Medical Use of Marijuana, 935 CMR 501.000: Medical Use of Marijuana; and 935 CMR 502.000: Colocated Adult-Use and Medical-Use Operations. The laws and regulations regarding medical use of marijuana, as well as adult use of marijuana, may be viewed on the Commission’s website at https://mass-cannabis-control.com/the-law/.

Those interested in locating and licensing a medical or adult use marijuana facility in the City of Brockton are encouraged to contact the Office of Mayor Bill Carpenter to schedule an introductory meeting to discuss the proposed business in advance of conducting a neighborhood outreach meeting.

Interested marijuana facility operators are also encouraged to review our zoning ordinances, which were updated in 2018 to include adult use marijuana cultivation, processing, manufacturing, testing, and sales. If you have any questions about our zoning or building regulations, please contact either our Planning Department at (508) 580-7113 or the Building Department at (508) 580-7150.

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