Senate Committee Advances Bill To Legalize Recreational MarijuanaPosted by On


Hawaii would join the 15 other states that have legalized recreational use of marijuana under a bill advanced by a state Senate committee on Tuesday, but the measure still has a very long way to go before it can win final passage.

In what appears to be a nod to the long odds faced by the legalization proposal, the same Senate committee also gave preliminary approval to a measure to decriminalize possession of up to an ounce of marijuana.

Hawaii has already decriminalized smaller amounts of cannabis weighing three grams or less, which is now punishable by a fine of no more than $130.

The legalization measure is Senate Bill 767, which would legalize possession of one ounce of marijuana or less by anyone who is 21 years old or older. It was approved by the Senate Public Safety, Intergovernmental and Military Affairs Committee on Tuesday.

A San Jose cultivator picks damaged leaves from marijuana plants. A bill to legalize personal use of marijuana advanced out of the state Senate Public Safety Committee on Tuesday.

Anthony Quintano/Civil Beat

The measure would also allow the sale of up to an ounce of marijuana, and instructs the state Department of Health to draft rules by July 1 to implement the new law, including regulations for establishing marijuana retail outlets.

The bill is supported by the Hawaii Public Defender, which suggested that legalizing marijuana would allow that office and other agencies in the criminal justice system “to use its resources to deal…

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Hawaii would join the 15 other states that have legalized recreational use of marijuana under a bill advanced by a state Senate committee on Tuesday, but the measure still has a very long way to go before it can win final passage.

In what appears to be a nod to the long odds faced by the legalization proposal, the same Senate committee also gave preliminary approval to a measure to decriminalize possession of up to an ounce of marijuana.

Hawaii has already decriminalized smaller amounts of cannabis weighing three grams or less, which is now punishable by a fine of no more than $130.

The legalization measure is Senate Bill 767, which would legalize possession of one ounce of marijuana or less by anyone who is 21 years old or older. It was approved by the Senate Public Safety, Intergovernmental and Military Affairs Committee on Tuesday.

A San Jose cultivator picks damaged leaves from marijuana plants. A bill to legalize personal use of marijuana advanced out of the state Senate Public Safety Committee on Tuesday.

Anthony Quintano/Civil Beat

The measure would also allow the sale of up to an ounce of marijuana, and instructs the state Department of Health to draft rules by July 1 to implement the new law, including regulations for establishing marijuana retail outlets.

The bill is supported by the Hawaii Public Defender, which suggested that legalizing marijuana would allow that office and other agencies in the criminal justice system “to use its resources to deal…



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