As the Vermont House Government Operations committee continued to discuss S.25, a bill that would make changes to the not-yet-implemented tax and regulate plans, the public had its first opportunity on Tuesday to hear from James Pepper, the first Chair of the Vermont Cannabis Control Board.
Despite the recent hiring of Pepper and the two additional Cannabis Control Board Commissioners, and despite the fact that the tax-and-regulate bill passed last year has yet-to-be implemented, the bill S.25 is receiving the House Government Operations Committee full attention this week.
However, the political reality of Governor Scott’s steady opposition to cannabis reform and willingness to revisit the issue, could end up nullifying any legislative efforts to clean up a bill that just spent three years in the spotlight.
Editors Note: It is admittedly a good sign that one of his staffers loves disc golf, I’ll bang chains with you any time Ethan.
Whatever the future of S.25, in any scenario the most significant policy decisions — and the details that matter to entrepreneurs on the ground — will be decided by the Cannabis Control Board, which makes Pepper’s first public comments worth watching in full.
In addition to the full video, the discussion was live-tweeted in detail by Dave Silberman, a Middlebury-based attorney and cannabis reform advocate.
Main takeaways from first legislative testimony by Cannabis Control chair James Pepper:
– Big focus on making sure people with criminal histories are welcomed into this market.
— Dave Silberman (@DaveSilberman) May 4, 2021
The House Government Operations Committee focus on S.25 continues throughout the week with testimony from the Vermont League of Cities and Towns, Vermont Racial Justice Alliance, Vermont Growers Association, NOFA-VT, Rural Vermont, the Vermont Cannabis Nurses Association, as well as individual medical patients and businesses.