Friday, February 05, 2016

Rural remote Alaskan towns struggling with federal laws that make transporting legalized pot illegal

Regulations that "create a new licensing process for businesses that could grow, test and sell pot" in Alaska that go into effect Feb. 21 could pose problems in rural remote areas, where federal regulations make it illegal to transport marijuana by commercial airlines, state ferry or some other transport, Joe Viechnicki reports for KFSK 100.9 radio in Petersburg (Best Places map). That has some worried that "hurdles for new pot businesses will be too difficult and local marijuana sales will remain underground and off the books."

Kevin Clark, chair of a subcommittee of Petersburg’s marijuana regulation advisory committee, told  Viechnicki, “The one thing that is really going to make it more difficult for locally is the testing, having to ship it out to be tested when you can’t ship it out. And then building a testing facility here that would be prohibitively expensive, considering the kind of volume you’d have to generate in order to justify it.”

Cynthia Franklin, director of the state’s marijuana control board, told Viechnicki: "I believe that people will be able to transport marijuana around this state, licensee to licensee, with a transportation manifest from the seed to sell software system and all of the requirements that are required in the regulations. But what everyone seems to be forgetting is the entire operation is prohibited by federal law. In other words, growing marijuana is prohibited by federal law, testing marijuana is prohibited by federal law, everything about this activity is prohibited by federal law. Marijuana is a schedule one controlled substance on the federal controlled substances act.” She said it all comes down to what laws the federal government will enforce. (Read more)

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