23 Nov Mp Legalize
In 2018, Vermont became the first state to legalize cannabis for adults through the state legislature. Adults 21 and older are allowed to have up to one ounce of flowering, five grams of THC concentrate and six plants. But it is still illegal to sell it. For now. Lawmakers passed a tax and regulation bill last year, and a retail store is expected to be operational by spring 2022. It is high time. This is Green Mountain State, after all. CBD is all that`s currently legal, but Democratic Gov. Andy Beshear said it`s time to legalize medical cannabis, and earlier this year, lawmakers introduced a bill to make that happen. The problem is the state Senate, which is controlled by Republicans and refused to pass a similar medical cannabis bill passed by the House of Representatives in 2020. West Virginia introduced three bills in the 2021 session — two to legalize cannabis and one to decriminalize. None of them managed to make it to the floor, but will be postponed to 2022. However, they are introducing a medical program this year – although it went into effect in 2017, patients were only able to sign up in February.
Growers, processors and pharmacies have already received licenses, but there are a few more hurdles before the program is fully rolled out — such as figuring out who will test the product for fungi, pesticides and potency before it hits the market. Although weed was legalized in Maine in 2016, it took a while to open a retail store — it wasn`t until October 2020 that recreational pharmacies finally opened. However, some in the state, which has had a medical program that has relied primarily on smallholder farmers since 1999, fear change is happening too quickly. Large multi-state cannabis companies are targeting the state (brands like Keef are already on pharmacy shelves), so some fear the family legacy is being lost. Despite its reputation as a liberal state, Massachusetts has a history of legislating social trends — you can`t buy alcohol until noon on Sundays and tattooing was illegal until 2000. So it wasn`t surprising that when Massachusetts (along with Maine) became one of the first East Coast states to be legalized in 2016, officials took the time to flesh out the details. Retail sales did not begin until July 1, 2018. Even now, retail store adoption is slow, with only 77 licensed recreational pharmacies open as of October. It didn`t help that when the pandemic hit, medical pharmacies were considered essential, but recreational pharmacies closed from March to May. As a result, the number of patients enrolled in the program increased from 67,000 the previous year to more than 100,000 in 2020. Floridians can buy cannabis at medical dispensaries with a doctor`s recommendation, but that`s about it.
Medical patients are not allowed to grow at home, and some members of the state legislature are even working to limit the amount of THC allowed in the state`s medical cannabis. Democrats are pushing for a bill to legalize recreational use, though it has not yet made it to the committee`s agenda. In March, a survey by medical cannabis advocacy group Florida for Cares found that 58 percent of Floridians favor the state`s legalization of the drug for adults. In April of this year, Virginia became the first Southern state to legalize recreational marijuana. The law was originally scheduled to take effect in 2024 — but Governor Ralph Northam postponed it until July 1, 2021. However, don`t expect pharmacies to appear anytime soon. It could take years for the legal weed business infrastructure to be in place in the state. (This is partly due to the law`s emphasis on social justice, so it will take some time to distribute licenses fairly.) Meanwhile, starting in July, residents can grow up to four cannabis plants and legally possess an ounce of weed, and medical patients can visit one of the state`s four dispensaries. Pennsylvania seems to be ready for legalization. The state has had a medical marijuana program for five years, with more than half a million registered patients and caregivers; Polls suggest that two-thirds of voters support adult drinking. In addition, Lieutenant Governor John Fetterman has become a strong national advocate for legalization.
“I don`t really use marijuana,” he told Rolling Stone last year. “But I think every adult should be able – legally, safely, to be taxed – and not call them criminals. We must quash all criminal convictions. If someone is serving a prison sentence for a marijuana-related conviction, get them released immediately. (It also doesn`t hurt that New York and New Jersey both passed legalization measures this year.) Things look promising: In February, two bipartisan state senators announced a bill that would legalize cannabis in the state — the first time a Republican lawmaker has supported such legislation. Missouri residents voted to legalize medical cannabis in 2018, but recreational legalization is unlikely to happen anytime soon, given that the state is Republican-controlled. The party has at least one advocate of legalization. “We spend more time and enforcement resources prosecuting marijuana smokers than all other drugs combined. Ten percent of arrests in the state of Missouri are currently in possession of marijuana,” Rep. Shamad Dogan said earlier this year when he proposed a constitutional amendment to legalize cannabis. Cannabis is illegal in North Carolina, but some are optimistic that a medical bill could be passed soon. In April, Senator Bill Rabon, one of the state`s leading Republicans, introduced the Compassionate Care Act, which would legalize cannabis for certain medical purposes.
Meanwhile, an Elon University poll in February found that a majority of residents support legalizing cannabis for adults, while 73 percent support legalizing the drug for medical purposes. South Dakota may be one of the most conservative states in the country, but in November, its residents voted in favor of an initiative to legalize medical cannabis and an initiative to legalize recreational cannabis. But it`s not that simple. Republican Gov. Krisi Noem filed a lawsuit against the recreation regulation, and the state Supreme Court ultimately dismissed it 4-1. New Mexico officially became the 17th state to legalize recreational cannabis in April, less than two weeks after the legislature passed the Cannabis Control Act. The new law allows adults aged 21 and older to possess up to two ounces of flower, allows the domestic cultivation of up to six plants, and automatically deletes the records of those convicted of minor cannabis-related offences. “New Mexico is a state, like most other states, that has seen a disproportionate number of cannabis-related arrests,” Emily Kaltenbach of the Drug Policy Alliance New Mexico told Rolling Stone. “This bill will change lives in New Mexico, not only through the automatic removal and reconviction elements, but also to create some fairness in the industry and protections for users.” Retail sales are expected to begin on April 1, 2022.