- Associated Press - Monday, December 1, 2014

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) - Attorneys and entrepreneurs are anticipating an uptick in business with Alaska voters’ passage of a law legalizing recreational use of marijuana.

California attorney Ben Adams, who worked as a public defender in Alaska for six years, said he intends to be the face of legal marijuana in Alaska and is a co-sponsor of a trade show in Anchorage, one of three planned for the spring, the Alaska Dispatch News (https://bit.ly/1vCBzcN) reported.

“The industry is expanding exponentially,” Adams said.

Anchorage attorney Lance Wells has formed the Alaska Cannabis Law Group, LLC with attorney David Schlerf.

“My phone has been ringing off the wall since the election,” Wells said. The group’s website advertises services in business development plans and criminal defense.

The ballot measure approved by voters Nov. 4 will take effect Feb. 24. Adults no longer will be arrested under state law for possessing up to an ounce outside their homes, though possession remains a federal offense.

Rules for selling pot will take longer. The measure laid out a nine-month rulemaking process for selling, growing and testing marijuana.

The Alaska Legislature will decide whether regulations are shaped by the Alcohol Beverage Control board or a new board. ABC Board director Cynthia Franklin said the agency has fielded a stream of calls and emails from Alaskans who want to shape regulations or want a business license.

Wells so far has helped prospective business owners set up corporations, he said. In some cases, he is talking people out of ideas that are illegal or questionable.

State business regulators have begun registering businesses with marijuana-related names such as Alaska Cannabis Tours, Juneau Cannabis Consulting, Phatt Phreddies Marijuana Dispensary and The Cannabis Cache.

Not all prospective business owners want their names used at the moment, fearing conflicts with current employers or the federal government. Others don’t want to reveal plans to potential competitors.

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Information from: Alaska Dispatch News, https://www.adn.com


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