New Hampshire Senate Minority leader Jeff Woodburn (D-Dalton) has announced that he will soon introduce legislation to legalize recreational cannabis.
“I think they have forced us to look at our laws and regulations,” says Woodburn, referring to Canada and the fact that their government is in the process of legalizing cannabis. “What we can’t control is what’s happening all around us. We can’t put our heads in the snow.”
Woodburn’s bill will be modeled after successful legalization efforts in other states such as Colorado, where the possession and licensed distribution of small amounts of cannabis is legal for those who are 21 and older. Cannabis will be taxed, though Woodburn hasn’t announced what the rate will be set at; he also hasn’t announced the exact possession limit.
“I’m very, very pleased with Sen. Woodburn’s decision to show leadership on the legalization issue;” says Matt Simon, New England political director for the Marijuana Policy Project. “It’s an issue that people are looking for leadership on, and there’s not been a lot of leadership in the senate.”
Unfortunately Governor-elect Chris Sununu has stated that he doesn’t support legalizing cannabis. He does, however, support decriminalizing cannabis, which is also expected to be discussed in the upcoming legislative session (starting January).
According to a WMUR/Granite State Poll conducted in March, 62% of adults in New Hampshire support legalizing cannabis.