Earlier this week, Gov. Phil Murphy of New Jersey signed three legislations into law, which decriminalized small amounts of cannabis possession and made adult use cannabis legal in the state. After the bills were approved, state officials moved to end arrests and dismiss any pending cannabis charges.
This makes New Jersey the 13th state in the United States to legalize marijuana, joining Massachusetts, California, Vermont, Colorado and Maine, where marijuana is legal. The state legislature in Pennsylvania is also considering legalizing cannabis.
The legislations also limit the use of prior cannabis convictions and create a carefully regulated marijuana marketplace that will give the state of New Jersey a boost economically. Murphy stated that in place of unreasonable cannabis laws were laws that would help establish a new industry that was based on equity, and that would reinvest into communities.
During the November 2020 elections, a majority of voters from New Jersey voted in favor of legalizing cannabis through a change in the constitution of the state. However, as no law had been enacted at the time, New Jersey law enforcement made arrests of more than 6,000 individuals for low-level cannabis possession.
Carly Wolf, a member of NORML, a group that supports cannabis legalization, stated that the enactment of these legislations was long overdue. Wolf added that residents of the state would no longer be subject to a criminal record and arrest for their personal use of cannabis.
Among many other clauses, the new cannabis laws in the state of New Jersey mean that:
- Retail cannabis sales are subject to state sales tax, with 70% of tax revenue going to lower-income communities.
- Adults in the state can legally buy up to an ounce of cannabis.
- Adults can possess up to six ounces of cannabis without facing any civil or criminal penalties.
- Individuals found with larger quantities of cannabis will have their criminal penalties reduced.
- A Cannabis Regulatory Commission whose purpose is to oversee the applications for licensing marijuana businesses will be set up.
- For the first two years, the state will give out licenses to 37 cannabis growers.
- The bill created a pathway to vacate active sentences for individuals who had already been charged with cannabis offences, with pending charges and cases also being dismissed
Murphy acknowledged that a commission would be required to address the issue on when cannabis will be sold in stores.
As New Jersey is gearing up to get its recreational marijuana market off the ground, other companies are flying high in jurisdictions that have had enabling marijuana laws for years. An example is Pure Extracts Technologies Corp. (CSE: PULL) (OTC: PRXTF), which has established itself as the leader within the cannabis extracts segment in Canada.
NOTE TO INVESTORS: The latest news and updates relating to Pure Extracts Technologies Corp. (CSE: PULL) (OTC: PRXTF) are available in the company’s newsroom at https://cnw.fm/PULL
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