Question: Who is eligible to purchase and possess cannabis — and how much can you buy?

Answer: Adults 21 and older can buy and possess up to 2 ounces of cannabis or 16 ounces of cannabis extract, or up to 800 milligrams of edible cannabis.

Question: What's the timeline for this program?

Answer: Licenses to sell cannabis are expected to be issued no later than April 1, 2022 — but it would become legal for adults to use cannabis in 90 days, or around July 1.

Question: Can I grow at home for personal use?

Answer: Yes — up to six plants for an individual or 12 plants for a household with two or more adults over 21.

Question: Can I use in public?

Answer: No. But plans are in place to create approved cannabis consumption areas.

Question: Can anyone apply for a license to produce, sell or transfer cannabis?

Answer: Yes — assuming you are 21 years old and do not have a criminal record related to workplace offenses, such as fraud and embezzlement. Other criminal background convictions may also play a role in eligibility. 

Question: How much will a license cost?

Answer: That depends. Licenses will cost up to $2,500 per year for cannabis producers, manufacturers, retailers and those who want to run cannabis testing and research laboratories. If you want to pay for the works — a vertically integrated combo of all of the options — it would cost up to $7,500. Small businesses would pay $1,000 as an annual fee and $2,500 for a vertically aligned license. And a cannabis server's license will cost $35. Plus there's an "up to $50" fee per plant.

Question: What else do I need to operate a cannabis business?

Answer: Water. You must provide proof of legal rights to a commercial water supply. 

Question: Will there be a cap on plant production?

Answer: Yes, until at least the end of 2025. That limit will be determined by Sept. 1.

Question: How will the new recreational cannabis laws work with the current Medical Cannabis Program?

Answer: Current medical cannabis license holders can apply for a dual license to produce and sell recreational cannabis. They will get a 30-day head start on newcomers to the business. In addition, the law will ensure recreational cannabis retailers set aside at least 10 percent of their product for medical cannabis patients to offset concerns about supply shortages. 

Question: Will this initiative make money for the state?

Answer: Yes. How much is another question. The bill's sponsors say it will bring in about $50 million in new revenue in its first few years, but the bill's fiscal impact report says that figure is closer to $30 million.

General Assignment Reporter

Robert Nott has covered education and youth issues for the Santa Fe New Mexican. He is assigned to The New Mexican's city desk where he covers a general assignment beat.

(7) comments

Khal Spencer

The New Mexican has to get its reporting act together or just admit it is a local tabloid doing surface reporting. Nowhere are the Federal issues mentioned. In other words, MaryJane is still illegal as far as the Feds are concerned. So if you get drug tested at LANL or Sandia, fill out a 4473 firearm purchase form, or some other Federal issues, if you check the dope-o-matic box or ring positive on the urine test, you are in trouble.

Come on, New Mexican. Do a better job.

Angel Ortiz

The Feds have bigger issues than dealing with marijuana (Mary Jane? Really?). Also if you are employed anywhere that requires drug testing and you are using marijuana, then it's on you for being an idiot. I believe these things are pretty obvious. Let's move on.

Khal Spencer

The title is "What to know about legal cannabis". The obvious thing to know, Angel, is that it is still illegal and a Schedule I drug under the federal Controlled Substances Act of 1970. Is it too much to ask the reporters on the New Mexican to do more than scratch the surface on a story?

If someone is an "idiot" its their problem. Lousy reporting is my problem as I pay for my subscription to this paper.

Sooner or later we have to reform the Federal laws, which not only impact employment and anything requiring a Federal background check but banking and commerce. Sooner is fine with me.

zach miller

Plant limits just mean people are going to grow their bushes as large as they can, instead of doing smaller bushes and harvesting more often. Which honestly, I am all for the results of that. 280+ days of sun down in LC for a long growing season will really lend itself so some huge results. The hardest part will be getting a water source that isn't riddled is bicarbonates/limestone.

Derek Gzaskow

4/20/22 on the plaza will be interesting

Seth Feder


Khal Spencer

[beam] Set up a brownie stand, Derek.

Welcome to the discussion.

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