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Connecticut Inches Closer to Legalizing Recreational Marijuana

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The Connecticut Finance Committee has approved legislation regarding the taxation of recreational marijuana. This legislation will be rolled into the general recreational marijuana legalization legislation. In Connecticut’s history, three committees have never approved legislation related to marijuana within the state’s legislature.

A final “omnibus bill” to legalize recreational marijuana will be created from multiple individual bills, according to the Hartford Courant.  Once the omnibus bill is generated, the Senate and House of Representatives will begin their debates. It’s unknown whether it will be handled this session or if a special session will have to be created for the issue.

Adam Wood, a pro-legalization advocate, said, “The war on marijuana is growing increasingly unpopular, and there is a growing sentiment in Connecticut and around the country that legalization is inevitable. The three bills passed to date propose a comprehensive and well-planned exit strategy for the state. They would establish a well-regulated, thoughtfully taxed cannabis market that takes production and sales out of the shadows and brings them above board.”

The General Assembly’s session in Connecticut ends on June 5. This doesn’t give lawmakers much time to set the wheels in motion on legalizing recreational marijuana in Connecticut, but it doesn’t mean it can’t be done either. There is support and opposition, with some still fearing public health and safety issues, for marijuana legalization.

If Connecticut does move to legalize recreational marijuana, the state could stand to take in about $180 million annually in marijuana tax revenue.

Nurse Kebra Smith-Bolden said, “We applaud the committee for advancing this legislation, which is both forward-thinking and mindful of the past. It very thoughtfully proposes the state direct the revenue from legal cannabis sales to the communities that have long borne the brunt of marijuana prohibition. This boost in much-needed resources to under-served communities promises a safer and healthier future for all Connecticut residents.”