New Jersey formally legalized marijuana on Monday as Governor Phil Murphy signed three items of laws that permitted cannabis use and possession for adults within the state.
The legal guidelines came to visit three months after New Jersey residents voted to legalize adult use of marijuana in November. New Jersey beforehand allowed marijuana for medical use.
“Our current marijuana prohibition laws have failed every test of social justice, which is why for years I’ve strongly supported the legalization of adult-use cannabis,” Murphy stated in a Monday statement.
“Maintaining a status quo that allows tens of thousands, disproportionately people of color, to be arrested in New Jersey each year for low-level drug offenses is unjust and indefensible,” Murphy stated. “Today, we’re taking a monumental step forward to reduce racial disparities in our criminal justice system, while building a promising new industry and standing on the right side of history.”
According to the assertion, the governor signed three items of laws supporting the adult-use of cannabis into regulation: the New Jersey Cannabis Regulatory Enforcement Assistance and Marketplace Modernization Act, New Jersey Assembly Bill 1897, and New Jersey Senate Bill 3454.
Together the three items of laws legalize cannabis use and possession for adults, decriminalize marijuana and cannabis possession, and create a regulated cannabis market within the state, amongst different issues.
The legal guidelines permit the possession and use of marijuana by anybody over the age of 21 inside the state. Residents can now have as much as six ounces of weed of their possession with out dealing with any penalty.
Underaged people in possession of alcohol or marijuana are topic to a written warning that may escalate to parental notification and a referral for group service upon later violations.
The laws additionally permits for the acquisition and sale of authorized weed at state-licensed dispensaries, establishing a leisure marijuana market within the state.
New Jersey presently has 13 marijuana dispensaries, with extra anticipated to open all year long.
The legal guidelines additionally put an finish to arrests for “petty marijuana possession.”
“Starting immediately, those who had been subject to an arrest for petty marijuana possession—an arrest that may have kept them from a job or the opportunity to further their education—will be able to get relief and move forward,” Murphy stated throughout a Monday briefing.
Some marijuana offenses, nevertheless, will stay felony. These embrace rising cannabis crops and not using a license, together with drug trafficking or distribution and the act of promoting, transporting or illegally importing illegal substances.
Newsweek reached out to Murphy’s workplace, however did not hear again in time for publication.