HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — You’ve probably grown accustomed to seeing massive billboards lining the highway promoting legal cannabis in Massachusetts. Well, come July 1st, those ads are going away.
From New Haven to Hartford and Windsor. Billboards promoting the sale of cannabis in Chicopee, Holyoke, and Springfield. But as Connecticut gears up to legalize the use of recitational marijuana for adults 21 and older on July 1, these ads will have to go away.
“All advertising needs to be focused on an audience that’s going to be 21 years or older and so that applies to all sorts of media including outdoor signage,” said Michelle Seagull, Commissioner, Department of Consumer Protection.
Advertising insiders tell News 8 local agencies received a letter from the from the State Department of Consumer Protection on Monday informing them of the change in law.
It also told them that the ads will have to come down. They say they are currently reviewing the law.
This, just one week after Governor Ned Lamont signed it into law.
“It’s a big change in law and so we just need to educate the industry about this change give them an opportunity to review the law, see what’s required of them and come into compliance.” said Seagull.
The ads can be seen from state highways, but they aren’t placed on state property.
Permitting is only partially regulated by the State Transportation Department. But it doesn’t have any say over the content on either traditional or LED boards.
Meanwhile, It’s estimated retail sales of cannabis won’t be up and running in Connecticut until the end of 2022. This is leaving a void Massachusetts shops are happy to fill.
“A lot needs to happen first and there’s a lot of important work that shouldn’t be improperly rushed,” said Seagull.