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Virginia: Legalize and regulate responsible adult-use cannabis

Legislation is pending, SB 1406 and HB 2312, to legalize and regulate the responsible use of cannabis by adults 21 and older. The legislation provides for an automatic expungement process for those convicted of certain marijuana-related crimes, and establishes a regulatory scheme for the regulation of cannabis cultivation, manufacturing, and testing facilities, wholesalers, and retail cannabis stores. The bills also provide that net profits attributable to regulatory activities shall be appropriated to pre-kindergarten programs for at-risk three and four year olds, the Cannabis Equity Reinvestment Fund, substance use disorder prevention and treatment programs, and public health programs. The legislation creates the Cannabis Control Authority, the Cannabis Equity Reinvestment Board, and the Cannabis Public Health Advisory Council. Virginia Governor Ralph Northam has publicly called for the legalization of cannabis. "It’s time to legalize marijuana in Virginia. Our Commonwealth has an opportunity to be the first state in the South to take this step, and we will lead with a focus on equity, public health, and public safety. I look forward to working with the General Assembly to get this right.” In 2020, lawmakers in Virginia enacted legislation to reduce penalties for offenses involving personal possession of up to one ounce of marijuana to a civil violation – punishable by a maximum $25 fine, no arrest, no jail time, and no criminal record. And while this is progress, it’s not nearly enough. An estimated 1 in 4 adults in America currently live in a jurisdiction in which cannabis is legal for use by adults. It’s time that state lawmakers take action so that all Virginians have the option to legally and safely possess, use, and purchase cannabis and cannabis products from licensed retail outlets. According to statewide polling data, 61 percent of Virginia adults support legalizing the responsible use of marijuana by adults. Virginians agree and the administration agrees, it's time to legalize it. Enter your information to send a message to your lawmakers in support of this effort.

Sponsored by NORML


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