AUGUSTA – Republican House Leader Ken Fredette is calling for the delay of recreational marijuana sales in Maine until next year, or until lawmakers approve needed regulations.

A ban on retail pot sales technically lifts Thursday, but the state hasn’t set up a way for marijuana retailers to get the required licenses.

Meanwhile, the Maine Senate on Tuesday accepted Republican Sen. Roger Katz’s bill to delay sales until this spring. The matter faces further votes.

Voters in 2016 approved legalizing recreational marijuana for adults. But while pot possession and use is legal, sales have remained illegal as lawmakers try to overhaul the voter-approved law and spur the regulatory process under Republican Gov. Paul LePage’s administration.

LePage has criticized legalizing marijuana and called for lawmakers to address issues such as medical marijuana.

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