School board to Lewiston voters: Don’t legalize marijuana

September 24th, 2014 by admin Leave a reply »

Lewiston’s School Committee has voted to oppose an upcoming marijuana legalization vote in the city, saying it could lead to more drug use by teens.

“(Marijuana) is already pervasive. We don’t think we need to make it available at every mom-and-pop convenience store,” Lewiston School Committee Chairman James Handy said Tuesday. Lewiston’s superintendent said school officials are having to discipline more students for bringing marijuana to city schools.



The committee adopted the resolution Monday, six weeks before Nov. 4 referendums in Lewiston and South Portland on whether it should be legal in those cities for adults to possess small amounts of marijuana for recreational use. The committee’s stand is similar to a vote in July by the South Portland City Council encouraging voters to reject marijuana legalization.

Legalization advocates also have been trying to get the question on the ballot in York, but a judge last week backed the town’s argument that the referendum is not lawful because marijuana is illegal under state and federal law and the drug cannot simply be made legal at the town level. The Marijuana Policy Project, which proposed the ordinances in all three communities, was still considering Tuesday whether to appeal the court’s ruling.

The stands by Lewiston’s school board, South Portland’s City Council and York’s Board of Selectmen show that the legalization movement is facing widening opposition as it moves beyond Portland toward a potential statewide referendum in 2016.

Portland voters overwhelmingly approved a similar legalization ordinance in 2013 after

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