Marijuana is now legal in Vermont — but not on Lake Champlain

Sail boats and a passenger ferry dot Lake Champlain as seen from Battery Park in Burlington, Vermont. —Wilson Ring / AP

MONTPELIER, Vt. (AP) — The U.S. Coast Guard is reminding boaters that despite Vermont’s new law legalizing recreational marijuana, the use of marijuana remains illegal on Lake Champlain.

On Sunday the possession and use of small amounts of marijuana becomes legal in Vermont. But under federal law marijuana is still a controlled substance and possession or use remains a federal offense.

The Coast Guard says crews will continue to enforce all federal laws, including those relating to the transport, use and possession of marijuana.

Officials say operating a vessel under the influence of alcohol or drugs remains a significant threat to public safety. The Coast Guard may board commercial and recreational vessels on international, federal, and state waterways to ensure safety and security.