This year is proving to be another monumental year for marijuana legalization efforts across the U.S. as four more states are advancing adult-use legalization bills. Some legalization efforts have also been introduced at the federal level.
In the U.S., at state and federal levels, there are over 750 marijuana-related bills this year, Forbes reports. Some of those include medical marijuana for pets, changing gun laws for medical marijuana patients, changing child custody laws for medical marijuana patients, and requiring that health insurance companies include medical marijuana.
As for new state-specific marijuana legalization bills, these four states are making headway:
In New Mexico, both the House and Senate committees approved separate versions of legalization bills. The bills are similar but the Senate’s version says that legal recreational sales can only take place at state-run establishments. The Public Affairs Committee has approved this version.
Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham has voiced her support for legalization and will sign a passed bill into law providing protections regarding public health and safety are adequate.
The New Hampshire House Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee has advanced a recreational marijuana bill as well. A floor vote by the House of Representatives approved the legislation. The vote was 209-147 in favor of legalization. Lawmakers believe they have enough support to override a potential veto by Governor Sununu – who indicated that he would veto marijuana legislation if it made it to his desk.
Hawaii’s Senate Judiciary Committee has voted unanimously to approve a marijuana legalization bill. The bill hasn’t been scheduled for a full floor vote yet. Hawaii may also face some trouble with Governor David Ige. He’s not exactly supportive of any type of marijuana law reform. In preparation for his opposition, a decriminalization bill is also advancing which may be a better option for the state under this governor.
Vermont’s lawmakers have approved legislation to implement legal marijuana sales. On Feb 28, a full Senate floor vote is expected to take place. Governor Phil Scott signed Vermont’s current marijuana legalization bill into law but seems resistant to sign sales into law. Lawmakers may have enough support to override a veto.