Recreational marijuana possession limits, comprises continue en route to becoming law

As lawmakers continue to find compromises that would best suit Minnesota’s legalization of recreational marijuana, final decisions could come as soon as this week.

A primary concern to date has revolved around possession limits for marijuana enthusiasts.

The House-Senate conference committee tasked with finding a compromise between the version of the bill that passed each chamber separately has now proposed a limit of 2 pounds of flower per consumer over 21 years old. A previous House version allowed 1.5 pounds, while a Senate version provided a 5 pound allowance, including homegrown plants.

Included in the bill’s current iteration would be decriminalizing marijuana possession, and expunging previous marijuana-related charges as soon as Aug. 1, 2023.

But those looking to make a purchase at a cannabis dispensary – such as those seen in states like Colorado and California – will likely take more than a year as the state looks to establish a proper licensure system under the Office of Cannabis management.

Taxes for products containing THC could be high – at a proposed rate of 10 percent, in addition to state sales tax – with 80 percent of proceeds expected to cover state induced regulation of the system, and the remaining 20 percent benefiting local governments.

Dispensary compliance and regulation are expected to result in extra costs for counties across the state, and currently local government could enforce a quota on the amount of dispensaries per population.