The Constitution State is expected to end their prohibition
The Constitution State may finally be getting with the program as it appears Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont and state legislators have arrived at an agreement that would legalize recreational marijuana for adult use as early as next month. You read that correctly. While retail sales, marijuana dispensaries, won’t begin until 2022, residents of the state will be within their rights if they possess up to 1.5 ounces of marijuana, or store up to five ounces in their home or car trunk.
Connecticut lawmakers further decriminalized possession over the allowable amounts. Anybody caught with anything more than that amount will face an initial fine of $500. Repeat offenders will be charged with a Class C misdemeanor. Minors caught using underage may face a written warning or a Class D misdemeanor, depending on their again and the amount they’re possessing.
An unfortunate addition to the bill bans marijuana use in state beaches and parks, though violators would only be charged with a $250 fine. Lawmakers also heavily regulated marijuana advertising, prohibiting it advertised anywhere with ten percent or more of an underage audience.
As for retail sales, they could begin as early as May 2022. Licenses would be granted through a lottery system that favors applicants from neighborhoods with high rates of unemployment and drug-related crime. The bill refers to these applicants as “social equity applicants,” and they could claim half of all initial licensing. A Social Equity Council made up of 15 members will screen the applicants.
This is exciting news for a state with a nickname like the Constitution State. While many southern states are slowly making changes to their marijuana law, mostly focusing on medical marijuana programs, northern states are becoming alarmingly aware how much tax revenue can be collected by legalizing marijuana for adult use. Politicians are also becoming more aware that marijuana prohibition is no longer a popular stance.