By Bob Katzen

A proposal that would raise from 21 to 25 the age at which a person can legally purchase marijuana was also sent off to a study committee ensuring its demise.

Supporters say that many neurological studies have shown that the human brain is not fully developed until age 25 and that using marijuana prior to age 25 can interfere with brain development and potentially affect important skills.

“In my opinion, the most important aspect of legalized marijuana is ensuring our young people’s safety,” said the bill’s sponsor Rep. James O’Day (D-West Boylston). “My support for this legislation is strictly due to data around brain development and how we can prevent negative impacts on young people’s memory, learning and attention skills.”

“I would have preferred [the bill] to have more debate and discussion this session, but I am aware of the strong marijuana lobbying efforts,” continued O’Day. “I support legalized marijuana and understand this particular effort to change the law would go against the majority who support legal consumption at age 21. However, I do plan on filing the legislation again next session.”

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