Democratic Gov. David Ige publicly stated this week that he does not intend to veto pending legislation to decriminalize low-level marijuana possession offenses. The Governor has until July 9th to take action on the measure, or it will become law absent his signature.
House Bill 1383 reduces penalties involving the possession of up to three grams of marijuana from a criminal misdemeanor, punishable by up to 30 days in jail, a $1,000 fine and a criminal record, to a non-criminal violation – punishable by a $130 fine. It also provides procedures for the courts to grant an expungement order for those previously convicted of a marijuana possession offense involving no more than three grams.
It also establishes a task force to review cannabis policy and to make recommendations to the legislature by 2021.
The new law will go into effect on January 11, 2020.
By contrast, Gov. Ige did announce his intent to veto legislation allowing medical cannabis patients to transport their medicine between islands, stating that such activities are in direct violation of federal law. He also announced that he will veto separate legislation seeking to establish commercial regulations for hemp farming.