Lawmakers Voted To Approve Marijuana Legalization Bills In Four States This Week

MJ moment

In state legislatures across the country, it’s been a busy week for marijuana reform—with lawmakers in four states approving new legalization bills in committee, plus other cannabis and drug policy developments taking place in additional states. Following the slew of state-level reform victories on Election Day, legislators have increasingly signaled that they view legalization as inevitable and are either hoping to leverage the movement’s momentum or get ahead of activists who are pushing for policy changes via the ballot. This week proved especially active for cannabis and broader drug reform legislation. At the committee level, legalization bills advanced in Hawaii, Minnesota, New Mexico and North Dakota. Also, Washington State lawmakers approved a broad drug decriminalization measure and Wisconsin’s governor unveiled a proposal to legalize both medical and recreational cannabis. And that’s only some of what happened. Here’s a breakdown of this week’s marijuana legalization votes:  Hawaii The Hawaii Senate Committee on Public Safety, Intergovernmental and Military Affairs approved legislation to allow adults 21 and older to possess and purchase cannabis from licensed retailers. It would also allow adults to grow up to three plants for personal use. The vote was 4-1. That same panel separately passed a bill to expand the state’s decriminalization law, increasing the possession threshold from three grams to one ounce. People caught with an ounce or less would be subject to a $130 fine, without the threat of jail time. The measure cleared the committee in an unanimous 5-0 vote. The legalization bill will advance to a joint hearing of the Senate Judiciary and Ways and Means committees. After that point, it would go to the full chamber floor. Meanwhile, the decriminalization legislation is moving to the Judiciary Committee. Minnesota A bill to legalize cannabis in Minnesota was approved by the House Commerce Finance and Policy…

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