New Jersey could be the next state to legalize recreational marijuana. Residents of the Garden State are eager to make cannabis legal, once and for all. This is according to an article published in March by NJ.com. The state has been going back and forth on legalization for the last several years.
New Jersey voters will ultimately get to make the final decision when they vote on the upcoming November 2020 ballot. On November 3rd, residents will vote in the 2020 Presidential Race.
On the same ballot will be a poll to approve the New Jersey Marijuana Legalization Amendment.
Unlike other states which have passed bills to make cannabis legal, New Jersey lawmakers are proposing an amendment to the state constitution.
In December of last year, the New Jersey State Senate voted 24-16 to approve a bill to add recreational cannabis to the 2020 ballot.
If it successfully passes, the amendment will not actually go into effect until January 1st of 2021. The new law would make cannabis legal state-wide for adult residents above the age of 21.
Advocacy groups have been working tirelessly for years just to get the issue on the ballot in the first place. Medical marijuana has been legal in New Jersey since the passage of the New Jersey Compassionate Use Medical Marijuana Act back in 2010.
A coalition of pro-cannabis organizations have vowed their support, including New Jersey United for Marijuana Reform, ACLU of New Jersey, Doctors for Cannabis Regulation, the Latino Action Network, the American Trade Association for Cannabis and Hemp, Law Enforcement Action Partnership, the NAACP New Jersey State Conference, and the NJ CannaBusiness Assocation.
Collectively, the movement to lift the prohibition of recreational cannabis in New Jersey is being referred to as NJ CAN 2020. Activists are warning the public not to become complacent; marijuana legalization in New Jersey is far from a done deal.
“Folks can’t take for granted the fact that legalization is going to happen in New Jersey. That’s something that we need to work diligently on,” said New Jersey ACLU Executive Director Amol Sinha. Previous efforts to legalize recreational marijuana in New Jersey have failed, including separate bills proposed by Democratic Senator Nicholas Scutari in 2017 and 2018.
According to New Jersey Senate President Stephen Sweeney, “It’s 50/50. I’m going to put my best effort into it. Since I’ve been Senate president, this is the issue I committed to that I’ve had the toughest time getting over the finish line.” A joint statement by Senators Scutari and Sweeney in November 2019 read, “This initiative will bring cannabis out of the underground so that it can be controlled to ensure a safe product, strictly regulated to limit use to adults and have sales subjected to the sales tax.”
Also......The New Jersey Marijuana Legalization Amendment is on the ballot in New Jersey as a legislatively referred constitutional amendment on November 3, 2020. pic.twitter.com/ALFEHu9deT