Members of the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, and Homeland Security heard expert testimony on Wednesday challenging the federal government’s failed policy of cannabis prohibition. The hearing, entitled “Marijuana Laws in America: Racial Justice and the Need for Reform,” debated the merits of various alternative policy options – including abolishing cannabis’ longstanding Schedule I criminal status under federal law.
Legalization is still possible this year, but only if we continue to put the pressure on our elected officials to get it done.
Welcome to the latest edition of NORML’s Weekly Legislative Roundup!
In the first in what are anticipated to be multiple Congressional votes to address the federal prohibition and criminalization of marijuana, the House Financial Services Committee will today voted to advance The SAFE Banking Act, HR 1595.
Big news out of Connecticut today, as a bill to legalize the adult-use and retail sale of marijuana has passed through a critical vote in the General Law Committee with a 10-8 majority.
In some big news out of New Jersey, several marijuana reform bills have been voted out of their committees and are awaiting floor votes.
A.1617, the Marijuana Regulation and Taxation Act (MRTA), has been re-introduced this legislative session. The bill would legalize the adult possession, use, and regulated sale of marijuana. Over the past twenty years, many New Yorkers have been negatively affected by the harms of prohibition in New York. With people of color accounting for nearly 85% of those arrested annually, the MRTA directs the benefits of taxing and regulating marijuana to these communities. Because structural racism is ingrained in marijuana prohibition, it’s important that the MRTA both ends marijuana prohibition and promotes racial justice. Significant steps are taken in the amended MRTA to ensure racial justice and a small business-friendly industry, including: Creating a micro-licensing structure, similar to New York’s rapidly…
In news that bodes well for the future of cannabis legalization in the state of New York, both chambers of the state legislature have included legalization language in their annual budget proposals. Both budget proposals also address the expedited expungement of certain marijuana-related convictions, implementing social equity programs in the state’s growing marijuana industry, and diverting tax money earned through the legal cannabis industry to benefit communities that have borne the brunt of the most brutal aspects of marijuana prohibition and the war on drugs in New York. Though Governor Cuomo’s budget proposal does not allow for the personal cultivation of marijuana plants, the NY General Assembly’s budget proposal does promote home cultivation upon the legalization of adult-use and retail…
The overwhelming majority of the American public has accepted these realities and it is time for their elected officials to do the same. It is time to pass the End Federal Prohibition Act, close this dark chapter in our nation’s history, and move on from the failed policies of prohibition and towards the sensible policies of legalization and regulation.
In New Hampshire, there has been a great deal of progress in the last few years. Several bills have been introduced in the state legislature, ranging from legal hemp production to adult-use marijuana legalization, and the fight for freedom has never been more widely supported than now.