Delaware marijuana task force votes to release final report amid more confusion – The News Journal


Confusion and uncertainty after Adult Use Cannabis Task Force meeting Jason Minto/The News Journal/USA TODAY

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Helene M. Keeley, D-Wilmington South makes note of committee members votes at the Adult Use Cannabis Task Force meeting at Legislative Hall in Dover.(Photo: Jason Minto, The News Journal)Buy Photo

A legislative task force studying recreational marijuana legalization in Delaware will release its final report after all.

The panel narrowly approved the release Wednesday amid another chaotic meeting that resulted in some members questioning both the legality of the final vote and whether the public was served by the task force’s work.

That includes the state legislator who cast the deciding vote.

“I don’t believe that it’s been vetted enough, [and] we don’t have enough information that we obtained in here,” said state Rep. Steve Smyk, R-Milton, an opponent of legalized marijuana. “If I was a chair, things would have been different. It would have been much more lengthy and much more sound.”

The vote is the latest turn in what has been a yearlong battle over legalizing marijuana in Delaware.

State Rep. Helene Keeley, D-Wilmington, and Senate Majority Leader Margaret Rose Henry, D-Wilmington, introduced legislation in early 2017 that would allow people 21 and older to purchase up to an ounce of marijuana from dozens of stores authorized to sell cannabis manufactured at licensed Delaware growing operations – creating a new industry that could generate $25 million a year in tax revenue for the state.

House Bill 110 was voted out of committee in May but was never called up for a vote before the full House of Representatives. That led Keeley and Henry to create and chair a task force to study how a legal marijuana industry might operate in Delaware.

The hope was that the

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