November was huge for the legalization. Even though we were all glued to the internet or tv watching the results of the presidential election, 7 states were legalizing marijuana in some form or another. I know we all expected California to be the first to legalize for recreational since they were the first state to legalize medicinal marijuana. But they did get it passed this November, along with Maine, Massachusetts and Nevada. Also we had Arkansas, Florida, and North Dakota pass it for medicinal use. Some may not see that as a huge step forward but the legalization in any form in the south is quite a feat so congrats to those 7 states.
Now we are all wondering who will be next? Colorado keeps showing that things are better now that recreational marijuana is legal there, less crime, less teen use, and tons of tax money that mostly went back into the school system. Well we looked at it and came up some states to watch for our next legal states.
While New Mexico has legalized medicinal marijuana, they have already started pushing for recreational use for adults in the state. On January 17 they proposed revisiting the legalization for adult use, but no bill has been proposed as of yet. Law makers in New Mexico have until February 16th so if you are in New Mexico this is the time to let your lawmakers know that you want adult use legalized!
The first big day in bill filing in 2017, state representatives filed “Joint Resolutions 17 and 18”. One of these would legalize for medicinal use and the other for adult recreational use.
“In most states that have passed reform, the voters are allowed to look at it on a ballot and say yes or no on reform. Here in Texas, we rely on our state reps to advocate for us,” said Nakamoto, who says that NORML also wants Texas legislators to provide more forgiveness for marijuana-related crimes.
Lawmakers in Texas have the same idea, in both reforms there is an aim to reduce penalties and reclassifying convictions less than an ounce. Let your Texas lawmakers know that you want marijuana reform!
Rhode Island has tried for 7 consecutive years to legalize marijuana with no success, but now that neighboring state Massachusetts has legalized, they are willing to try again. Lawmakers are now proposing the idea that they will lose ground because people can travel to Massachusetts and Maine to receive recreational and medicinal marijuana. They are hoping to get it passed this time to stay in line with the other states in the area!
Bernie Sanders has been hard at work advocating for adult recreational use and almost got it passed in 2016. He is expected to push forward to make it happen in 2017. This year taking a quieter approach to legalization. This new bill would allow users to carry up to 2 ounces at one time. Like we needed another reason to love Bernie!
Other states to mention are Delaware, New Jersey, and Kentucky that are all looking at ways to legalize in 2017. What states are you hoping push legalization this year?