Vivian Stiver testifies in front of the House Labor and Commerce Committee for confirmation to the Marijuana Control Board at the Capitol on Wednesday, March 6, 2019. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire)

Vivian Stiver testifies in front of the House Labor and Commerce Committee for confirmation to the Marijuana Control Board at the Capitol on Wednesday, March 6, 2019. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire)

Controversial marijuana board appointee meets resistance in confirmation hearing

Skeptics worry Vivian Stiver is still anti-marijuana

Marijuana Control Board appointee Vivian Stiver says her past involvement working on a referendum against legal marijuana businesses in Fairbanks will not affect her work on the board.

“I have personal views, I do, and they get set aside,” Stiver said. “I don’t think I’ll have any problem representing business fairly.”

Stiver went through a confirmation hearing in the House Labor and Commerce Committee on Wednesday afternoon.

[Alaska moves closer to onsite marijuana use in certain areas]

Brandon Emmett, a former board member who is still involved in the marijuana industry in Fairbanks, testified to the committee against Stiver.

Emmett listed a number of reasons why he believes Stiver should not be appointed to the board, including her involvement on the Keep Neighborhoods Safe Fairbanks group that worked to rid Fairbanks of the legal marijuana industry in 2017, her previous record of spreading misinformation in Fairbanks, and also because of her inconsistent public statements.

Rep. Sara Hannan, D-Juneau, had asked Stiver if she would work to overturn the on-site marijuana consumption regulations that have been recently delivered to Lt. Gov. Kevin Meyer.

Stiver said, “It’s a done deal, there’s nothing for me to support or not support.”

Hannan pressed her, saying “Democracy is never done” and got a similar response.

When Emmett testified, he quoted a news article in which Stiver had said she would work to overturn on-site consumption regulations.

Rep. Gabrielle LeDoux, R-Anchorage, asked Emmett which article he was quoting from. Emmett said he would track the article down and send it to her.

The owner of Juneau’s Fireweed Factory asked the committee not to appoint her to the board, because her “known hostility” toward the industry.

As of 4:30 p.m., about 3o people had signed up to testify concerning Stiver’s appointment to the board.


• Contact reporter Kevin Baird at 523-2258 or kbaird@juneauempire.com. Follow him on Twitter at @alaska_kev.


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