- Associated Press - Thursday, December 15, 2016

BOSTON (AP) - The Latest on recreational marijuana becoming legal in Massachusetts (all times local):

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2 p.m.

Legal marijuana activists are celebrating a new law that allows people 21 and over in Massachusetts to possess, grow and use limited amounts of recreational pot.

The voter-approved law took effect Thursday, though it will be at least another year before licensed retailers can legally sell the drug in the state.

Activists were gathering in front of the Statehouse to mark a milestone in their effort to end what they called marijuana prohibition.

Keith Saunders, a board member of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, held up a jar that he said contained less than an ounce of cannabis flower. He noted that a day earlier that would have constituted a civil infraction.

Some supporters of the law are concerned that lawmakers might seek changes to it in the coming months.

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12:19 a.m.

It is now legal in Massachusetts for adults to possess, grow and use limited amounts of recreational marijuana.

While the voter-approved law took effect Thursday, it will be at least another year before the state issues retail licenses to sell the drug. For now, that leaves recreational users with little choice but to buy it from illegal dealers.

Marijuana advocates say they’re happy to see the law take effect, but worried that lawmakers and Republican Gov. Charlie Baker will try to change it.

Baker says the wishes of voters will be respected, but adds that it’s appropriate to examine issues such as the potency of marijuana products and the location of pot shops.

Massachusetts is the first eastern state where recreational marijuana is legal.

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