Marijuana leaves (Clarion file)

Marijuana leaves (Clarion file)

Health official picked for state marijuana regulatory board

Eliza Muse’s appointment to the Marijuana Control Board’s public health seat was effective June 25.

By Becky Bohrer

Associated Press

JUNEAU — A state marijuana education program manager has been appointed to the board that regulates Alaska’s legal cannabis industry.

Eliza Muse’s appointment to the Marijuana Control Board’s public health seat was effective June 25, said Corey Allen Young, a spokesperson for Gov. Mike Dunleavy. Muse replaces Loren Jones, who had held the seat since the board’s inception in 2015.

Muse’s appointment allows her to serve until the Legislature next considers appointments, which will likely be sometime next year.

In her public health work, Muse “has been extensively involved in marijuana education and addressing public health challenges associated with legalization,” Young said by email.

Muse said she sees herself as “trying to ensure that we can find sort of a sweet spot as it pertains to ensuring that public health is preserved, safety is preserved, in this new space of a marijuana marketplace and just ensure that our regulations are always considerate of public health.”

She said she sees the board appointment as a “logical fit.” Muse runs a marijuana education program within the state health department.

Muse said she isn’t stepping into her role as a board member “with any sort of preconceived notion or bias” toward existing rules. She said she wants to ensure policy stays in line with research and science, “which we know to date has been lagging due to federal regulations and really lack of guidance at the federal level.”

Muse said she wants to draw attention to “the fact that we do have limited science and research and data to make policy decisions off of.”

While many states have broadly legalized marijuana, it remains illegal at the federal level. Alaska, in 2014, was one of the first states to approve recreational use of marijuana by those 21 or older.

Lacy Wilcox, president of the Alaska Marijuana Industry Association, said she did not know much about Muse.

“What I had hoped and what I continue to hope for is that the person in the public health seat comes to the table with some science and knowledge and an open mind so that they’re not just regurgitating” anti-cannabis rhetoric, Wilcox said.

More in News

The Alaska State Capitol is seen on Wednesday, April 6, 2022. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
Legislature modernizes 40-year-old definition of consent in sexual assault cases

‘Alaska took a gargantuan step forward in updating our laws,’ says deputy attorney general

Project stakeholders cut a ribbon at the Nikiski Shelter of Hope on Friday, May 20, 2022, in Nikiski, Alaska. (Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
Stakeholders celebrate opening of Nikiski shelter

The shelter officially opened last December

Peter Segall / Juneau Empire
Gov. Mike Dunleavy speaks with reporters Thursday about the state’s budget at the Alaska State Capitol. Dunleavy said lawmakers had sent a complete budget, and that there was no need for a special session.
Dunleavy: No need for special session

Governor calls budget “complete”

A magnet promoting the Alaska Reads Act released sits atop a stack of Alaskan-authored and Alaska-centric books. Lawmakers passed the Alaska Reads Act on the last day of the legislative session, but several members of the House of Representatives were upset with the bill, and the way it was passed. (Ben Hohenstatt / Juneau Empire)
In last-minute move, Legislature passes early reading overhaul

Rural lawmakers push back on Alaska Reads Act

Graduates wait to receive diplomas during Connections Homeschool’s commencement ceremony on Thursday, May 19, 2022, in Soldotna, Alaska. (Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
Connections honors more than 100 graduates

The home-school program held a ceremony Thursday in Soldotna

Alaska Senate President Peter Micciche, left, and Senate Minority Leader Tom Begich, right, meet with reporters in Micciche’s office in the early morning hours of Thursday, May 19, 2022, in Juneau, Alaska, after the Legislature ended its regular session. Micciche, a Republican, and Begich, a Democrat, discussed their working relationship, as well as well as parts of the session they were either pleased with or disappointed with. (AP Photo/Becky Bohrer)
After House balks at bigger figure, budget OK’d with $3,200 payout per Alaskan

Budget finishes as second-largest in state history by one measure, but Dunleavy could make cuts

Loren Reese, principal at Kenai Alternative High School, gives Oliver Larrow the Mr. Fix It award Wednesday, May 18, 2022, at Kenai Alternative High School in Kenai, Alaska. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)
Kenai Alternative graduates 22, says goodbye to principal

The ceremony included special awards customized for students

Graduates throw their caps into the air at the end of Soldotna High School’s commencement ceremony on Wednesday, May 18, 2022, in Soldotna, Alaska. (Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
‘We never fell down’

Soldotna High School honors more than 100 graduates

Brandi Harbaugh gives a presentation during a joint work session on Tuesday, March 2, 2021, in Soldotna, Alaska. (Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
Mill rate decrease, max school funding included in proposed borough budget

The final document is subject to approval by the Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly

Most Read