On August 1, 2023, usage and possession of marijuana in Minnesota will be legal for recreational use for those over the age of 21. As that date nears, a group of members of the Duluth City Council has announced they will introduce a proposal for a new ordinance targeted at creating some restrictions with regard to how and where marijuana products can be consumed.
As noted in a FAQ on legalization from earlier this year, municipalities will be able to establish rules about the usage of smokable and vapeable in public places like parks in a similar way rules can be established for cigarettes and other tobacco/nicotine products.
Our news partners at WDIO are reporting that three Duluth City Councilors (Arik Forsman, Roz Randorf, and Terese Tomanek) are going to propose an ordinance that will look to prohibit the smoking or vaping of marijuana in public outdoor places, which would include all city parks.
The ordinance would ban smoking or vaping of marijuana products beyond just city parks, including the following spaces:
- Public parks
- Publicly-owned property
- Publicly-owned or operated parking lots or parking facilities
It is worth noting that other products (beverages, edibles, etc.) are not governed by this particular proposal. Furthermore, the state law bans usage at the following locations across Minnesota:
- Public school or charter schools and school buses
- State correctional facilities
- In a location where the smoke, aerosol or vapor of a cannabis product could be inhaled by a minor
- On federal property (such as courthouses, airports and national parks)
Additionally, rules about smoking or vaping in shared housing, like apartments, are governed by state law. Smoking or vaping of marijuana will not be allowed in any mult-unit housing like apartments or condos.
WDIO reports that this is the first-known proposal for an ordinance of this kind in Minnesota. While that is the case, it is not likely to be the last, as the new law does provide for cities and other local government units to create such rules.
The ordinance will be formally introduced at the July 24 meeting of the Duluth City Council, with plans for a vote from the full council on August 14. In the meantime, the three councilors behind the proposed ordinance are inviting the public to provide input on the matter to "ensure that all stakeholders can voice their perspectives on this important matter".