New Jersey Lawmakers Vote To Send Marijuana Sales Bill To Governor

MJ moment

New Jersey is one step closer to launching legal marijuana sales as approved by voters last month after the state Assembly passed landmark legislation Thursday to establish a framework for the new market. The Senate is expected to pass an identical bill later in the afternoon, which would formally send the measure to Gov. Phil Murphy (D) for his signature. Both chambers of legislature are also scheduled to vote Thursday on separate bills to decriminalize possession of up to six ounces of marijuana and reduce criminal charges for the possession of psilocybin. The two provisions were once parts of a single measure, but lawmakers spun off the psychedelic mushroom component into standalone legislation after some took issue with pairing them together. The marijuana sales legislation (A21/S21), passed by the Assembly on a 49–24 vote, with six abstentions, is by far the most sweeping of the bills—and has generated the most controversy. Introduced by sponsors just days after more than 67 percent of voters approved a marijuana legalization referendum on Election Day, it ran into repeated delays over concerns about social equity, licensing rules and drug testing of workers. The final legislation is the result of a compromise announced less than a week ago by top lawmakers and the governor, and includes a number of amendments made in committees earlier this week and only published online for public consumption after the fact on Wednesday afternoon. Sponsors have explained their rush by saying it’s necessary to pass the legislation before the voter-approved legalization of cannabis in the state Constitution takes effect on January 1. After the deal was reached, the governor and legislative leaders released a joint statement saying the revised legislation “will accomplish our shared goals of delivering restorative justice and ensuring that the communities most impacted by the War on…

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Source : New Jersey Lawmakers Vote To Send Marijuana Sales Bill To Governor

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