Wednesday, December 18, 2019

Cannabis legalization referendum OK'ed in NJ

New Jersey Lawmakers Vote To Put Marijuana Legalization On State's 2020 Ballot | Marijuana Moment - Kyle Jaeger:

December 16, 2019 - "New Jersey lawmakers approved a resolution on Monday that will put a referendum on legalizing marijuana on the state’s 2020 ballot. The Senate voted 24-16 in favor of the measure, with the Assembly following by a margin of 49-24 — supermajority support that means lawmakers will not have to vote on the measure again next year, which is required for such resolutions if they are only approved by a simple majority.

"The votes come days after committees in both chambers held hearings on the issue, with testimony from advocates, stakeholders and opponents.

"While advocates and certain lawmakers had hoped to enact legalization legislatively this year, disagreements over the specifics of proposed bills derailed that effort, and leaders agreed to put the question of broad cannabis reform before voters instead. Gov. Phil Murphy (D), who had participated in negotiations with the legislature to get legalization done, said last month that he was disappointed a passable bill didn’t materialize but that he’s confident New Jersey voters will support the policy change next November.

"In the meantime, the governor said he will work with lawmakers to expeditiously pass legislation to decriminalize marijuana possession....

"Murphy and the governors of several other states in the Northeast have also engaged in a regional dialogue about how to coordinate their cannabis markets after it’s legalized. It’s not clear how New Jersey opting for a referendum process will impact those discussions, however."

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