Owners of out-of-state marijuana businesses told a room full of Arkansas students, activists and business owners at a Clinton School of Public Service panel discussion Tuesday that government restrictions on marijuana would likely continue to ease with time.
And as far as federal laws that make marijuana illegal, Dan Anglin, chairman of the Colorado Cannabis Chamber of Commerce, said they were becoming less of a concern.
“So what?” he asked in response to a question from the audience.
Anglin, along with other panelists, emphasized the role that state lawmakers are increasingly playing in regulating marijuana use. And when it comes to federal regulations that govern banking, for example, Anglin said banks in Colorado are finding ways to provide services to marijuana companies.
Tuesday’s panel consisted of Anglin; David Couch, the sponsor of the voter-approved Arkansas Medical Marijuana Amendment; state Rep. Douglas House, R-North Little Rock, who was put in charge of shepherding marijuana bills through the House by House Speaker Jeremy Gillam; and Erik Williams, a founding partner of Will & Way Total Cannabis Solutions in Connecticut.
Anglin said state regulations tend to be unfavorable to business at first but ease over time. However, Williams said he believed Arkansas lawmakers and regulators developed common-sense rules on their first try.
“Here in Arkansas they have taken a tack with the rules and regulations and the legislation that really understood the best way a regulatory structure works is when the regulatory agencies are in tune with the end goal,” he said. “That’s keeping bad actors out. That’s keeping it out of the hands of children. That’s making sure there are products that are effective.”
House said lawmakers are aware there’s a functioning