Despite a surge in cannabis legalization efforts across the country, Maryland has failed to pass adult-use cannabis reforms through the legislative process this year. The two bills in Maryland’s House that would have legalized adult-use cannabis failed to pass by their legislative deadlines, CBS Baltimore reports.
The bills did not make it out of committee. If passed, they would have expunged cannabis crimes, set up taxation and disbursement mechanisms, and enacted substantial social equity provisions, including lowered application fees and start-up funding for disadvantaged individuals.
“We are disappointed in the inaction to legalize cannabis for adult-use in Maryland this year. This means another year of Marylanders being subjected to the harms of prohibition — including thousands of life-altering stops, searches, and arrests for cannabis.” — Olivia Naugle, legislative analyst for the Marijuana Policy Project, via Cannabis Wire
The missed opportunity comes after a recent Goucher College poll found that two-thirds of Marylanders, the most ever recorded, support legalizing adult-use cannabis, according to the report.
Dr. Kevin Sabet, president of Smart Approaches to Marijuana — a political group that lobbies to maintain cannabis prohibition — said in a WJLA report, “This is huge, and we were proud to have taken part in testifying against these reckless bills. Given Governor Larry Hogan’s advocacy against commercialization, we were confident there would not be much of a push on this front, but we are even more pleased to see that neither of the two bills progressed past a hearing.”
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