[dropcap class=”kp-dropcap”]R[/dropcap]ecently, the Alaska Marijuana Control Board voted 3-2 to allow the consumption of cannabis in retail outlets which would legalize cannabis bars. If the decision is approved by Governor Byron Mallott, it would make Alaska the first state to allow cannabis consumption outside of a person’s home or a private space.
Until November 20, the Board rejected such an amendment because Alaska’s recreational cannabis policy only allows for four types of licenses; retail, cultivation, manufacturing and testing. “You look at the alcohol consumption industry, there’s bars, there’s restaurants, there’s other types of facilities where you can go in and consume alcoholic beverages on site and there was a fairly large voice from the public for having some facility for cannabis use,” Board chairman Bruce Schulte told KTUU.
The task will not be easy. All other recreational states; Colorado, Oregon and Washington, have so far failed to pass a legally sanctioned public place to consume. Activists in Colorado and Washington have opened vapor lounges to bypass smoking regulations, however, time will tell how long they will last.
According to the Alaska Dispatch News, the amendment does not impact local prohibitions. Alaska has no actual statewide smoking prohibitions, however, municipalities can still ban public smoking places as they see fit.