The U.S. Virgin Islands is the most recent region in the nation to end cannabis prohibition after Governor Albert Bryan Jr. formally signed two bills legalizing marijuana and facilitating cannabis expungements. Bryan signed the bill just a few days before its 10-day deadline. He also used the occasion to issue a proclamation allowing people to seek pardons for previous cannabis possession convictions.
The governor stated that since the Bryan-Roach Administration started working, officials have operated toward the decriminalization of marijuana use for adults. He also noted that following the personal effort of the representatives in the 34th Congress and preceding legislatures as well as the initiatives of his team, the government has signed into law the Virgin Islands Marijuana Use Act.
According to Bryan, the legislation incorporates key elements of his original proposal, including a simplified regulatory structure for both treatment and adult consumption, enforcement authority for the Department of Marijuana Regulation, entrepreneurial and job creation for Virgin Islands inhabitants, and the establishment of a stream of revenue to help finance essential government programs and operations.
Key clauses in the USVI bill include:
- Anyone over the age of 21 may possess up to two ounces of cannabis, 14 grams of marijuana products, and an ounce of cannabis-infused tinctures, edibles and ointments.
- The law will establish the Office of Cannabis Regulation (OCR), which will be in charge of licensing cannabis businesses, regulating the market, and establishing guidelines for packaging, labeling and marketing.
- There will be different license and permission categories, including those for cannabis producers, distributors, growers, microgrowers, testing facilities and onsite consumer establishments.
- For every one of the region’s major islands, the Office of Cannabis Regulation will have a limit on the number of licenses it can issue. From Jan. 1, 2025, regulators may issue additional permits if a study is done proving that the extension is required to satisfy customer demand.
- Cannabis users who use the substance for ceremonial purposes can seek their own growing licenses.
- On marijuana acquired through dispensaries, there’s going to be a tax of at least 18%, but this won’t be the case for medicinal marijuana. The legislation also specifies licensing costs and imposes a tax of $0.5 per gram on marijuana growers who sell their product to any other licensees.
- Cannabis-related products will be subject to a trace-and-track scheme.
- The legalization measure also includes a number of equity provisions, such as priority application ranking for women, people of color, and business owners who have suffered service-related injuries.
- The maximum THC content for edibles is 100 milligrams with a 10-milligram maximum per serving.
- The ownership of a marijuana company must also meet residency criteria.
As this cannabis market gets underway, those who qualify to grow their own cannabis could benefit from the cutting-edge indoor cultivation equipment available on the market from several companies, including Advanced Container Technologies Inc. (OTC: ACTX).
NOTE TO INVESTORS: The latest news and updates relating to Advanced Container Technologies Inc. (OTC: ACTX) are available in the company’s newsroom at https://cnw.fm/ACTX
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