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Maine Agriculture Commissioner Critical of Pot Legalization

Maine Agriculture Commissioner Critical of Pot Legalization

By Zachary Babin - November 1, 2016

BANGOR, Maine (AP) — Maine Agriculture Commissioner says a plan to legalize marijuana in the state will burden law enforcement and negatively impact natural resources here.

Voters will decide if they want to legalize recreational marijuana use in Maine on Nov. 8.

Commissioner Walt Whitcomb says the referendum targets rural areas of the state where law enforcement is widely dispersed. He says that means the state Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry will need to provide oversight that it is ill equipped to handle.

Whitcomb voiced his opinion in a Bangor Daily News opinion piece Monday. He says legalization would divert state resources away from supporting farm growth, which is a bigger priority for Maine.

Pro-marijuana campaign manager David Boyer disputed Whitcomb. He says new tax revenue will fund oversight of legal pot.