In Maine, like many states, it’s legal to purchase alcohol from a drive-up window and head on down the road. It’s one of the conveniences of living in a state — especially considering the nasty winter weather. Who wants to get out their cars just to grab a six-pack of Allagash White, the most popular beer for Maineiacs?
Will the state allow buying marijuana to be just as easy? That issue will be debated Tuesday by the state legislature’s marijuana committee.
Last November, Maine passed Question 1, better known as the Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol measure. But will marijuana actually be regulated the same way?
“If Maine allows [drive-through sales] for alcohol, we see no reason why it shouldn’t be allowed for marijuana, the safer substance, so long as Maine puts in place reasonable regulations to protect public safety and the consumer,” David Boyer, director of the Maine chapter of the Marijuana Policy Project, told the Portland Press Herald. “The voters want it regulated and taxed like alcohol. The rules should be the same.”
Related Story: What To Expect From Maine’s Recreational Marijuana Market
Under the proposed regulations, retail stores would be able to sell up to one ounce of cannabis to an adult from drive-up windows. But opponents fear the law would be, well, too convenient.
State Sen. Roger Katz of Augusta is among those fighting against drive-through sales. His greatest fear is that the herb will wind up in the hands of underage residents
“Given the fact that about half the people in the state voted against legalization, I think we ought to go slow and be cautious in the beginning,” Katz told the Press Herald. “I anticipate a vigorous debate. We’ve still got a ways to go yet,”said Katz, the Republican co-chairman of the Joint Select Committee on Marijuana Legalization Implementation.
The language of Question 1 did not specifically mention drive-through sales. But something not prohibited by state law is typically legal by default. Supporters firmly believe that the intent of the law was that marijuana should be treated like alcohol.
Currently, none of the states that have legalized recreational marijuana have drive-through sales. Colorado allows alcohol to be sold via drive-through, but not cannabis. California, which will begin recreational sales next year, is likely to allow it.