Updated July 2019
Alaska is one of the most progressive states in the nation when it comes to marijuana and cannabis policy, both for consumers and business owners. Alaska passed Ballot Measure 2 in February 2015 to become the 3rd state in the United States to legalize recreational marijuana, and it’s one of the very first states to legalize marijuana for medical purposes.
Recreational Marijuana in Alaska
Recreational marijuana became legal in Alaska in November 2014 after voters approved Measure 2, which allows the possession, use, and sale of adult use cannabis for adults aged 21 and older.
Under the law, individuals can carry up to 1 ounce of marijuana at home or in the trunk of a vehicle. Driving under the influence of marijuana can result in a DUI or OUI arrest. Carrying even trace amounts of recreational marijuana outside of Alaska by vehicle or through a mail service is illegal under federal law.
Possession of more than 1 ounce of recreational marijuana is punishable to up to 5 years in jail and fines up to $50,000. Sale of recreational marijuana can lead to incarcerations up to 10 years and fines up to $100,000.
In March 2019, Alaska became the very first state in the U.S. to allow on-site marijuana use. Under the law, licensed marijuana retail shops can apply for an endorsement that allows them to offer on-site consumption to their customers.
Medical Marijuana in Alaska
Medical marijuana became legal in Alaska in 1999. With written approval from their physicians, patients can possess or transport up to 1 ounce of marijuana flower.
Under Alaska’s law, approved conditions include:
- Cachexia or Wasting Syndrome
- Chronic Pain
- HIV or AIDS
- Multiple Sclerosis
Other conditions are subject to approval by the Alaska Department of Health and Social Services.
Consumption of CBD from Hemp Oil in Alaska
Hemp-derived CBD products are legal under Federal Law in the United States; however, individual state laws are dynamic and fluid. Individual states may enact their own laws governing hemp-derived CBD.
Cultivation of Cannabis in Alaska
Alaska’s recreational marijuana law allows adults 21 and older to grow up to six plants on their personal properties, with up to one of the three plants mature at any one time. House Bill 75, which passed in July 2016, allows two adults 21 years of age or older that are residing in the same dwelling to grow up to 12 marijuana plants, which six or fewer being mature. Transportation of up to 6 immature plants is also legal, but all cannabis product must be kept in the trunk of the car. Trimmings from these legally-grown plants can be shared with adults over 21, but money cannot be exchanged.
Registered medical marijuana patients can grow up to six plants at home, although no more than three may be mature at any given time.
In 2018, Alaska passed a law to authorize the creation of a program to study the growth, cultivation and marketing of hemp and hemp-derived products like CBD.
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Author: Eve Ripley