In 2016, we saw four states successfully legalize recreational cannabis and eight states approve new medical policies. Here in 2017, there are at least 10 states that are considering altering their cannabis laws to help slowly peel back the layers of age-old prohibition.
Senator Jeff Woodburn has stated his plans to introduce recreational legislation in the Granite State this year. Unrelated to Woodburn’s plans, lawmakers introduced House Bill 215 in January, which would study the current pot laws in other states. The results of the study aren’t scheduled for release until December.
Governor Andrew Cuomo said we witnessed a “dramatic shift in public opinion” after several states have successfully implemented regulated recreational cannabis markets. The Empire State’s governor introduced a decriminalization measure in January, according to the Washington Times. “Data consistently show that recreational users of marijuana pose little to no threat to public safety,” Cuomo wrote in his yearly legislative agenda.
For the seventh consecutive year, Rhode Island lawmakers introduced recreational weed legislation. To sweeten the deal, the proposed policy would impose a whopping 23 percent tax.
Representative Jeremy Faison told The Marijuana Times that the whole state of Tennessee should have full medical use. He says he plans to introduce a bill in this year’s legislative session that legalize medical statewide. Two cities in the state already have decriminalized.
Earlier this year, Lone Star State policymakers filed requests to decriminalize cannabis. Anyone caught with a small amount of herb would be charged with a civil infraction and a $250 fine, instead of facing jail time.
House Speaker Greg Hughes said that he believes medical cannabis could be the state’s biggest issue, the Deseret News recently reported, even though that viewpoint is likely not shared by the rest of his fellow bureaucrats.
A bill filed in January would decriminalize marijuana and only fine for possession. Governor Terry McAuliffe hopes to come to an agreement legalizing medical use statewide.
A bill allowing patients to ingest cannabis oil for medical use was passed in South Carolina in 2014. This year, the South Carolina Compassionate Care Act would legalize cannabis for terminally ill patients and those suffering from debilitating medical conditions.