Government Health & Environment

Gov. Baker’s Vaping Ban May Be Overturned for Medical Marijuana Users

Suffolk Superior Court Judge Douglas Wilkins has ruled it should be the Commonwealth’s Cannabis Control Commission (CCC) that decides the fate of vaping for medical marijuana users in the state, not Gov. Charlie Baker, who enacted a four-month statewide temporary ban on vaping on September 24, 2019.

According to Wilkins, the ban on all vaping products is “likely invalid” in relation to medical marijuana and undermines the medical marijuana law. Wilkins has given the commission a one-week deadline to determine what, if any, emergency regulations it wants to enforce. If the commission does not make a decision soon, the ban for medical users will be lifted as of November 12.

The new ruling does not apply to recreational marijuana vaping products or tobacco.

Gov. Baker has gone on record and said he would appeal Wilkin’s decision and ask the Supreme Judicial Court to look at the case.

Two people in the state have died due to vaping products, but the exact cause is unknown. Others were sent to the hospital with concerning medical conditions due to vaping. Because of this, Baker and the Department of Public Health (DPH) decided to make a temporary ban on vaping products, citing it was a public health emergency at the end of September.

“DPH likely exceeded its authority by banning vaping products used by medical marijuana cardholders,” Wilkins wrote in his decision.

Wilkins believes that the commission needs to be the one that adopts “emergency regulations,” if they decide to do so.

“Like any Massachusetts agency, the CCC itself has full authority to adopt emergency regulations … It may choose to promulgate the emergency regulations in whole or in part. Or, it may choose not to promulgate them,” Wilkins wrote. “The choice needs to come from CCC, not DPH or this court.”

The Cannabis Control Commission was scheduled to meet on Thursday, November 7, but did not reveal whether or not it planned to discuss the ban.

5 Replies to “Gov. Baker’s Vaping Ban May Be Overturned for Medical Marijuana Users

  1. This whole banning issue might have to be rethought. Many of the bans were hysterical reactions enacted without real evidence. The CDC is saying that the real culprit seems to be vitamin E which is used as a thickener. This most often found in bootleg oils, most often found in THC black market solutions. The vitamin E when inhaled sticks to the inside of the lungs. They stopped short of endorsing vaping, but claimed that this was the common find in all of the injuries and deaths.

  2. I read that the vitamin E and THC is only found in bootleg vaping products. The ban on menthol cigarettes while non menthol cigarettes are still being sold makes no sense. My question is if recreational marijuana is being sold even though it is illegal under federal law how can a Governor or State ban these other products?

    1. Have to wonder whether legislators themselves are under the influence. So far, in the states that have legalized, the promise of less taxes hasn’t materialized. Their taxes continue to rise and the revenue projections haven’t been realized. Illinois is the latest state to pass legalization with the hope that it will fix their finances. It seems that high tax states use this to numb their populous offering them to drugs. An unattentive public makes corruption easier.

  3. This state never ceases to amaze me. You can openly smoke marijuana but god forbid you smoke a cigarette they give you the third degree!

  4. The states in their greed for more “revenue” have become more or less bookies and Marijuana dealers. We have the biggest sucker game ever invented the lottery, Casinos , recreational pot and trust me sports betting is coming. The new Encore Casino is opening a room that will be a sports book. These are the same rackets that organized crime was criticized for taking money from the people who could least afford it.

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