Cities and towns grapple with pot rules in advance of licensing

WORCESTER – With the first license applications for recreational marijuana establishments to be accepted by the state Cannabis Control Commission April 1, municipalities are scrambling to understand what they can and cannot do to ban or regulate commercial marijuana locally.

Friday morning, some 125 people, largely municipal officials from across the state, filled the Blue Lounge at Worcester State University’s student center to hear from a regulator, a municipal law expert and a town planner about implementing the adult use of marijuana law. The program was organized by the Central Massachusetts Regional Planning Commission, which provides technical assistance to its member towns on the new law.

Adult use, or recreational, marijuana was approved by 53 percent of voters in the state through a petition, Question 4, on the ballot in November 2016.

Jeffrey Bagg, CMRPC project manager, described the

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