Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont recently asked the governor of New Mexico, Michelle Lujan Grisham, how she managed to get a legal marijuana measure approved in the state’s legislature earlier this month. Lamont is currently working on growing support among legislators for his proposal to legalize cannabis in the state of Connecticut.
In a podcast interview, Grisham stated that she told her Connecticut counterpart that separating legalization from associate social justice measures would make it easier to approve both. She explained that it was problematic to put the weight of legalization and social justice proposals on a single new industry approach. She added that decoupling legalization from criminal justice helped engage people more actively in the process.
In a special legislative session that was held earlier this month, legislators in New Mexico approved a cannabis legalization measure. In order to get enough votes for the bill to be passed, Democratic leaders removed the bill’s original criminal justice proposals and drew up a separate measure for them. Both legislations were approved in the legislature and have since been enacted into law.
In general, Grisham advises governors to not rush into marijuana legalization without doing any research or inviting broad participation. She noted that talking with legislators and stakeholders and gathering more information before launching into a legislative session would be beneficial to the cause.
Another legalization proposal that was introduced in Connecticut places more emphasis on social equity in the marijuana industry. The measure, introduced by Rep. Robyn Porter, will provide licenses to social consumption sites and allow up to six marijuana plants to be grown at home. The proposal differs from the governor’s proposal, which doesn’t include these clauses.
Advocates hope that some clauses from Porter’s proposal will be added to the governor’s measure, which they have referred to as inadequate. Others are hopeful that the state’s legislature will advance the measures, having considered various legalization bills in the recent past but never approving any.
Lamont has revealed that he is open to various options on legalization but noted the importance of a bill meeting some basic requirements. He has also voiced his support for cannabis legalization, noting that he would be working with legislators to advance the measure in this legislative session.
As House Speaker Matthew Ritter put it late last year, the legalization of marijuana in the state of Connecticut is inevitable.
The advice to separate social justice bills during debates to legalize marijuana may be a savvy move that can satisfy all concerned as seen in California where the taxes and fees paid by entities such as Sonoma Biologics Corp. are helping to fund nonprofits that support disadvantaged communities.
NOTE TO INVESTORS: The latest news and updates relating to Sonoma Biologics Corp. are available in the company’s newsroom at https://cnw.fm/Sonoma
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