Recreational marijuana

Today is the day that consumption of marijuana becomes legal in Massachusetts. For landlords, this is new and unchartered territory but most lawyers seem to agree that if a landlord has a “no smoking” policy, that applies to marijuana as well as tobacco. As reported in my prior post, most landlords cannot prohibit consumption of so-called edible marijuana products but the rules wll be different for public housing authorities.

BOSTON - SEPTEMBER 17: A sign in support of Question 4 is raised in the air during the Boston Freedom Rally on Boston Common in Boston on Sept. 17, 2016. Tens of thousands of people were expected to attend the two-day rally, which has gathered annually for over two decades. It includes musical acts and political messages in support of the legalization of marijuana. (Photo by Craig F. Walker/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)

What about cultivation? The new Chapter 94G, Section 2 allows landlords to prohibit or regulate “consumption, display, production, processing, manufacture or sale of marijuana and marijuana accessories,” but cultivation is not mentioned. The general thrust of the statute, however, seems to give significant leeway to landlords to regulate marijuana-related activities at their properties. My view is that this extends to the growing and cultivation of pot. When the legislature returns in January, it would be very helpful to landlords throughout the commonwealth if this issue could be resolved.