Vermont Senate Judiciary Committee Approves Bill to Legalize Recreational Cannabis

vermontIn a decisive 4 to 1 vote, the Vermont Senate Judiciary Committee approved a bill today that would end cannabis prohibition in the state and regulate the plant for adult personal use.

Senate Bill 241 would make it legal for adults 21 years of age and older to possess up to one ounce of cannabis and would establish a tightly controlled system of licensed cannabis cultivation sites, testing facilities, and retail stores. It would also create a study commission to examine issues such as edible cannabis products and home cultivation, which would not be allowed under the bill.

Earlier this week, Governor Peter Shumlin and Senate Judiciary Chairman Dick Sears announced they would support a bill that “cautiously and deliberately” ends cannabis prohibition in Vermont.

A strong majority of Vermonters (56%) support regulating the cultivation and sale of marijuana for adult use, according to a statewide survey conducted by the Castleton Polling Institute in September.

“Vermont lawmakers are really demonstrating leadership on this issue”, says Matt Simon, the Marijuana Policy Project’s Montpelier-based New England political director “They carefully reviewed the evidence and weighed all the options, and they’re now moving forward in a very deliberate fashion. This is a significant and much-needed policy change, so they want to get it right.”

Simon continues; “Most Vermonters agree it is time to end prohibition and start regulating marijuana. It’s a product that many adults enjoy for the same reasons that many adults enjoy consuming alcohol. While no substance is entirely harmless, the evidence is pretty clear that marijuana is less harmful than alcohol. Adults who choose to consume marijuana should be able to purchase it legally and safely from licensed stores that test and label their products. They shouldn’t be forced to seek it out in an illegal market where they might be exposed to other more harmful substances.”

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About Anthony Martinelli

Anthony, co-founder and Editor-in-Chief of TheJointBlog, has worked closely with numerous elected officials who support cannabis law reform, including as the former Campaign Manager for Washington State Representative Dave Upthegrove. He has also been published by multiple media outlets, including the Seattle Times. He can be reached at TheJointBlog@TheJointBlog.com.


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  1. Brian Hadley

    NOt legalization, this is the co-opting of nature, to fill the coffers of Vermont…this is NOT legalization, it merely makes cannabis a revenue generating substance for the state, with few licensed growers- carpetbaggers and rich elites who can afford the licenses- and does NOT allow average people to GROW FOR THEIR OWN USE. This is a corporate takeover, and all Vermonters will be voting UT their representatives who do not listen to constituents!

  2. B

    Yea it’s Bc the Colorado law makers said they wish they haven’t allowed people to grow their own right away kept a black market blah blah I live in vt it’s exciting but kinda stinks to but we will have lounges to smoke in public so that will be neat

  3. Anonymous

    Looks like Responsible Ohio made its way out to Vermont. Bummer for personal growers.

  4. deb

    Can’t grow your own? That is fishy to me!!!

  5. Anonymous

    Cant grow your own?

  6. herbwarrior420

    Vt would become the 1st state to legalize recreational pot through legislation.

  7. Anonymous

    outstanding. We the people in Colorado enjoy being the 1st to legalize recreationaly as well as the 1st to open recreational pot shops. Vermont has the chance to become the 1st state to legalize through legislation. GO Vermont.

  8. Anonymous

    YES!!! I may be moving to Vt!

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