Alaska alcohol and marijuana manage board votes to take away major regulator

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The Alaska Alcoholic Beverage Handle Board has voted five- to take away the state’s major alcohol and marijuana regulator.

In a particular meeting Thursday morning, members cited “differences in temperament” involving the board and Erika McConnell, head of the Alaska Alcohol and Marijuana Handle Workplace.

According to Thursday’s action, McConnell would be fired from her position only if the state’s Marijuana Handle Board concurs with her removal just before Nov. 30.

Mark Springer, chairman of the marijuana board, stated by telephone that a meeting of the board has currently been scheduled for Nov. 13-15. Asked irrespective of whether the board would concur with McConnell’s removal, Springer declined comment but referred to the minutes of a July meeting in which the marijuana board voted unanimously in favor of a motion declaring that the board has complete self-confidence in McConnell.

By telephone, McConnell stated she believes members of the alcohol board have been pressured by the administration of Gov. Mike Dunleavy to vote for her removal. Under state law, the alcohol board is a quasi-judicial agency below the Division of Commerce “for administrative purposes only.” When the governor can appoint a director, he can not ordinarily take away one particular. [Read more at Anchorage Daily News]

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