The number of Republicans in favor legalizing marijuana in some form or another is growing. Here’s a list of 10 that have recently shown their support.

The majority of Americans favor cannabis legalization in some form. This statistic combined with other new perspectives on cannabis has several republicans in congress speaking out in favor of marijuana legalization.

A number republicans have recently supported or vocalized their continued support to further cannabis legalization. Some live in states where cannabis is a major industry, while others are seeking medical marijuana approval for veterans.

There are several reasons for the shift among some conservatives. Regardless of their personal motivations, republicans are vocally changing their tune on cannabis. Here is a list of 10 notable republicans in congress that have backed some form of marijuana legalization.


Dave Joyce, Ohio

Joyce is co-sponsoring a GOP plan that would regulate marijuana like alcohol and enable the Department of Veterans Affairs to prescribe cannabis treatments to veterans, according to NPR.

Joyce proposed the bill, known as “Common Sense Cannabis Reform for Veterans, Small Businesses, and Medical Professionals Act.” The legislation is the first of its kind by a republican congressman, and its sentiments have the potential to begin shifting Republicans’ stance on cannabis reform.


Don Young, Alaska

Don Young was the other co-sponsor of the cannabis reform bill with Joyce. “This bill isn’t perfect, but it takes important steps to safeguard our personal liberties and freedom,” Young tweeted in regards to the Bill. Young has also called on his fellow congressmen on both sides to unite on this bill to help move in the direction of what he sees as liberty.

Why Does Congress Need Two Years To Federally Legalize Marijuana?

A Pennsylvania company is asking a federal court to return about $166,000 in proceeds from marijuana sales in Missouri that was seized by law enforcement in Kansas as the cash was on its way to Colorado.

The U.S. Attorney's Office for Kansas filed the civil asset forfeiture case last month in the U.S. District Court in Wichita.

Federal prosecutors claim the money is subject to forfeiture because of alleged violations of a U.S. law against manufacturing and distributing drugs. The driver of the van, though, hasn't been charged with any federal crimes in Kansas, U.S. District Court records show.

Drug Enforcement Administration Special Agent Bryson Wheeler, who is stationed in Kansas, wrote the affidavit detailing the allegations of the case.

The approximately $165,620 in cash was seized by Dickinson County Sheriff's Deputy Kalen Robison during a May 18 traffic stop on I-70 near the Abilene exit. The money was in a Ford Transit van owned by Empyreal Logistics

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SINGAPORE: A commercial diver who habitually smoked cannabis or "marijuana", purportedly to relieve the back pain he experienced due to his job, was sentenced to nine years' jail on Monday (Oct 25) for drug offences including possessing about 2.4kg of the drug.

Muhammad Haikal Mohamadan, 31, pleaded guilty to three charges including drug consumption, possession of a Class A controlled drug and possession of drug utensils. A fourth charge was considered in sentencing.

The court heard that Haikal was acquainted with co-accused Muhammad Shahrukh Khan Mohamed Rosli, who helped a man known only as "Ah Bang" to deliver drugs. Shahrukh also sold cannabis on the side to his own clients, at a rate of S$200 for about 50g.

Haikal had previously bought cannabis from Shahrukh's predecessor, but was told to buy it from Shakrukh from January 2019. Haikal first met Shahrukh in Pasir Ris in January 2019, where he bought S$100 worth of cannabis from him.

They met a second time near Haikal's home, and Shahrukh deposited about 350g of cannabis with Haikal for safekeeping as he did not want to carry too much drugs in his car should he get caught.

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OUTHERN OREGON, Ore. — State and county officials are hoping to hear from Southern Oregon residents on the impacts of illegal hemp and cannabis grows have on their communities.

On Tuesday, Oregon State Rep. Pam Marsh is hosting the virtual community forum to discuss the issues which have increased with the illegal cultivations, including water usage, working conditions, and permitting.

“There is a real sense of concern that so many operations seem to have a level of comfort in running illegal operations within our community, it is shocking, and I think it’s not acceptable,” Marsh said.

The issue has become so severe, Jackson County declared a state of an emergency on October 13 over the increase in illegal cannabis farms throughout the region.

County commissioners are hoping the state will assist in helping local agencies enforce regulations.

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State campaign eradicated 76K plants locally in 2021

California Attorney General Rob Bonta announced a shift in the Campaign Against Marijuana Planting’s future operations after seizing nearly 1.2 million illegally cultivated cannabis plants in 2021. Bonta directed the Department of Justice to conduct a six-month review of CAMP “in light of changes to the law since the program was first initiated” with the goal of focusing efforts on environmental degradation, labor exploitation and economic impacts associated with illegal cannabis cultivation. (Screenshot)

Nearly 1.2 million illegally cultivated cannabis plants were eradicated and more than 180,000 pounds of illegally processed cannabis were seized in 2021 through the California Department of Justice’s annual Campaign Against Marijuana Planting program, often referred to as CAMP.

Over the course of the 13-week eradication season, the multi-agency effort conducted 491 operations on both private and public lands in 26 California counties. CAMP teams recovered 165 weapons and removed more than 67,000 pounds of cultivation infrastructure, including dams, water lines and containers of toxic chemicals.

Authorities eradicated 74,669 cannabis plants from 26 illegal sites in Humboldt County, one of the top five largest yields in the state. Riverside County took first place with 509,453 plants eradicated from 135 sites followed by Mendocino, Trinity, Humboldt and Lake counties.

Humboldt County Sheriff William Honsal said CAMP only provided the county with additional resources for a period of 2-3 weeks. Between January and mid-August of this year, Honsal said the Sheriff’s Marijuana Enforcement Team “eradicated over 442,000 cannabis plants, seized and destroyed over 38,000 pounds of processed cannabis, served search warrants at 97 illegal cultivation sites and identified more than 500 environmental violations.”

Researchers may be one step closer to developing the equivalent of a Breathalyzer for detecting marijuana use.

In an early study, scientists found that their rapid test was able to reliably detect THC in people's saliva in under 5 minutes. THC, short for tetrahydrocannabinol, is the active ingredient in marijuana.

Right now, the "gold standard" for detecting marijuana use is to measure THC in the blood or urine. But those tests can take days to process. The other drawback is that unlike alcohol, THC can linger in the bloodstream for days or even weeks -- so a "positive" blood test does not necessarily reflect recent use.

Those facts have made it hard to develop a roadside test for marijuana use, akin to the Breathalyzer used to measure drivers' alcohol levels.

THC in saliva, however, reflects marijuana use within the past 12 hours, said Hakho Lee, the senior researcher on the new study.

There are some existing saliva tests for THC, but they are hampered by issues like slow processing time or giving "binary" results -- similar to a yes/no on a pregnancy test.

Lee said his team was able to develop a test that not only quickly detects THC in saliva, but quantifies the amount.

In initial testing with 43 marijuana users and 43 non-users, it accurately picked up THC in saliva samples from all users of the drug.

It took about 3 minutes from "sample in, result out," according to Lee, who is based at Massachusetts General Hospital's Center for Systems Biology in Boston.

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Arrests made at Illegal Marijuana Dispensary

On Wednesday, October 20, 2021, at approximately 10:00 a.m., deputies from the Sheriff's Lakeside Substation Crime Suppression Team and detectives from the Sheriff's Lakeside Substation, with the assistance of the San Diego County Sheriff's Department's Marijuana Enforcement Team (MET), the Sheriff's Special Enforcement Detail, and a representative from San Diego County Code Compliance, served a search warrant at an illegal marijuana dispensary located at 8802 Winter Gardens Blvd in Lakeside.

The warrant was part of ongoing investigations by the Sheriff's Department of illegally operating cannabis facilities in San Diego County. Detectives seized the following during the search: 

$1,961 in U.S. Currency11 pounds of processed marijuana22 pounds of Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) infused ediblesTHC vape products14 pounds of concentrated marijuana2 serialized handguns and 1 un-serialized "ghost" handgun

There were four subjects arrested for various narcotics and weapons related charges. 

This warrant follows community concerns about illegal marijuana dispensaries operating near schools and residential areas.  We want to assure those we serve the San Diego County Sheriff's Department is listening to the community and recognizes the negative impact illegal marijuana dispensaries have on our neighborhoods. 

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A Columbia man was arrested and charged for smuggling weed from a California airport to Columbia.

Kevin Antwan Simmons, 43, is charged with trafficking marijuana after officials found more than 40 pounds of weed and $4,000 in his suitcase at Columbia Metropolitan Airport, according to the Lexington County Sheriff’s Department.

“Law enforcement officers from the Sacramento area notified South Carolina-based Drug Enforcement Administration agents that Simmons was flying into Columbia October 17,” said Lexington County Sheriff Jay Koon. “Once Simmons landed and grabbed two suitcases at baggage claim, DEA and Lexington County narcotics agents approached him and he consented to a search of his bags.”

Sacramento officers found the weed in the suitcases when the bags were X-rayed before the flight departed, according to deputies.

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Two people were killed on Monday in a fire at an alleged illegal marijuana grow operation in Los Angeles, officials say.

The Los Angeles Fire Department received reports of the warehouse fire from a paramedic crew that passed by it at around 12:18 p.m. Within moments of the report being received, the fire had already seared through the roof of the building, the fire department said in a news release.

The firefighters who arrived at the scene saw with three severely burned people running out of the building while calling out a fourth person’s name, Los Angeles Fire Department Capt. Erik Scott told KTLA.

The three burn victims were hospitalized, and one of them, who suffered injuries to 90% of his body, died at the hospital, KTLA reported. The other two are still hospitalized, one in serious condition and the other in critical condition. Fire crews discovered a person’s body inside the building during a search of the premises on Tuesday morning, The Los Angeles Times reported.

The fire spread rapidly throughout the building and triggered multiple explosions. It took 150 firefighters slightly over an hour to extinguish the blaze, and fire crews continued to extinguish hotspots throughout the night, according to the fire department’s release.

Investigators suspect the building may have been home to an illegal marijuana grow operation based on testing of materials from inside the building, which revealed positive results for hemp, the release said.

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Agents of the Paraguayan SENAD incinerated 36 tons of marijuana on September 17, 2021, in Concepción department. (Photo: Paraguayan National Anti-Drug Secretariat)

On September 17, 2021, agents of the Paraguayan National Anti-Drug Secretariat (SENAD, in Spanish) incinerated 36 tons of marijuana in Concepción department.

“It was the largest drug incineration ever carried out in our country,” SENAD said in a statement. The previous record was in 2014, after the seizure of 26 tons of drugs in Capitán Bado, Amambay department.

The incineration of the 36 tons was done at the Internal Defense Operations Command base in Concepción. Units of the Paraguayan Armed Forces’ Joint Task Force found the drug on July 23, during a routine flyover in Paso Barreto district.

Paraguayan anti-drug agents seized more than 35,000 ecstasy pills at Silvio Pettirossi International Airport, on September 16, 2021. (Photo: Paraguayan National Anti-Drug Secretariat)

From a helicopter, service members witnessed “the activities of a group of people loading bags onto large trucks in a rural estate, in a partly wooded area,” the Paraguayan news portal ADN Digital reported. Service members arrested four people who were storing the shipment, bound for Brazil.

Rantoul leaders are giving thought to a potential start-up adult-use cannabis craft grower business in the village. 

The News-Gazette reports Rantoul natives Dane Ehler, operator of Heartland Hemp Co., and Blake Schilb, shared a proposal with the village board at an October study session that would seek to change a village ordinance banning all community cannabis businesses. The business they seek to open would only allow for the cultivation, drying, curing and packaging of cannabis for either sale at a dispensary or use at a processing organization.

No local dispensing of the cannabis would be allowed with the amendment. 

Ehler started his business in Hangar 1 of the former Chanute Air Force Base. The hemp he grows is used to create fiber that goes into clothing, paper products and other items. After the COVID-19 pandemic hurt his business, Schilb, who has history with a cannabis craft-growing business in California, approached him about starting this business in Rantoul. 

Schilb told the board the the business creates an opportunity to "grow Rantoul, to hire locally and teach others about this aspect of the cultivation medically." He noted medical marijuana has helped people, and notably his brother, who saw it help with pain, nausea and anxiety as he battled a serious illness. 

The board decided to table a vote until November. The issue is expected to be revisited with a Nov. 2 study session so public comment can be heard. There would not be any vote until the board's Nov. 9 meeting. 

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Grammy-winning Reggae superstar Ziggy Marley took to Instagram to blast the Singapore Government over plans to execute a man for marijuana possession.

The Singaporean man, Omar Yacob Bamadhaj, 41, was sentenced to death by hanging in February after authorities found him with 2 pounds of cannabis, which is considered a Grade A drug in the Southeast Asian country.  Singapore’s apex court dismissed Bamadhaj’s appeal on Tuesday, Channel News Asia reported.


Reacting to the reports on Instagram today, Ziggy wrote, “So the government of #singapore is going to kill a human being for two pounds of cannabis. Is that just or moral?”

The Dragonfly singer asked the question, “Singapore what are you doing?” before registering his dissatisfaction with both the use of word “drug” in the news coverage and the sentencing.

“The article says the “drug” not the plant, still trying to sell us that line still trying to fool the people still killing the people for a plant. F’ing ridiculous in any time or place its 2021. Its illegal in that country I get it but to kill a person for that should also be #ILLEGAL on the planet #EARTH”

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South Carolina is the latest state where public officials are speaking out against delta-8 THC. 

South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED) Chief Mark A. Keel recently wrote a letter to his attorney general’s office expressing his belief that state law criminalizes the possession and distribution of delta-8.

Assistant Attorney General David Jones responded back to say his office agrees, as first reported by Law360.

“Our office agrees with SLED’s essential analysis that the Hemp Farming Act did not legalize THC except as defined in lawful hemp,” Jones said in a letter to Keel last week. “If the General Assembly intended to undertake legalization of THC on the scale that the industry posits, they would have done so expressly and unambiguously.”

Instead, Jones said the legislative scheme of South Carolina’s 2019 Hemp Farming Act was much narrower: to create a legal framework for the licensed regulated production of industrial hemp as defined (cannabis containing less than 0.3% delta-9 THC). Other THC variants, such as delta-8, that exceed 0.3% on a dry-weight basis do not fit that definition and are prohibited under state law, the opinion states. 

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State Rep. Bob Morgan has filed legislation that would prohibit businesses from refusing to hire or firing workers for testing positive for cannabis.

House Bill 4116 states that an employer may not refuse to hire someone or discipline an employee for a positive drug test for THC as long as it is not affecting his or her work performance. The law would set a minimum level of 5 nanograms per milliliter of blood, or 10 ng/ml of urine, saliva, or other bodily fluid.

Illinoisans can buy and use cannabis as long as they are older than 21. Even with legal marijuana in the state, companies can still terminate people for using it.

Mark Denzler, of the Illinois Manufacturing Association, said while marijuana is a legal substance in the state of Illinois, businesses have the right to enforce their policies.

"It's important that this legislation does allow for manufacture employers to continue enforcing those drug testing policies," Denzler said. "It's important that this legislation continues to allow an employer's right to refuse hire to anyone who does show impairment."

The legislation would only apply to businesses that do not have any federal contracts because marijuana is still illegal at the federal level. The bill would provide exceptions for medical workers who would still be tested for THC.

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The upcoming informational meeting and vote to decide whether Ludlow will allow a retail cannabis dispensary has been led by Andi Goldman and Meredith Milliken, the duo behind Gotta Love Ludlow, whose mission is to educate residents about cannabis for health and wellness as well as financial benefits for the town of Ludlow.

Their presentation to the Ludlow Selectboard Tuesday, Sept. 14 prompted the board to schedule the upcoming informational meeting Monday, Nov. 1 with a vote by Australian ballot to follow Tuesday, Nov. 2.

Goldman and Milliken were Ludlow second-homeowners for the last 18 years and are now full-time residents; their tagline “Knowledge is Power” is at the forefront of their message. Goldman, a former corporate and securities lawyer and an investment manager, has over seven years of legal cannabis industry experience. Milliken, who is vegan and pro-organic, is also a former competitive swimmer and trainer and is drawn to the legal cannabis forefront from the health and wellness side.

Although they hope to be granted a license for an adult-use cannabis dispensary next year, they realize that is not a guarantee. This vote is simply a first step in the process.

According to Act 164, Vermont towns or cities must vote by ballot to allow cannabis retailers to operate in their town. If a town decides to not hold a vote or do nothing, that town would be ineligible for a state-licensed dispensary. Town approval does not mean a retailer will open in that town, and local ordinances and permitting will still apply. Vermont will distribute cannabis dispensary licenses in October of 2022; the state will also look at a geographic distribution when awarding licenses.

Goldman and Milliken don’t want Ludlow to miss out on that opportunity.

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Four years after weed became legal in California for adult recreational use, state law enforcement officials have doubled the amount of illicit marijuana plants seized and eradicated in an annual campaign. California Attorney General Rob Bonta on Monday announced that the California Department of Justice’s annual Campaign Against Marijuana Planting program, also known as CAMP, had eradicated nearly 1.2 million illegally cultivated cannabis plants this year.

That’s up from 614,267 plants seized in 2018, the first year that recreational marijuana was legal in California. The CAMP program has steadily ratcheted up enforcement over the years, with 953,459 plants eradicated in 2019 and 1.1 million plants destroyed in 2020. The numbers remain well below what agencies seized during California’s peak enforcement against illegal marijuana grows. In 2009, the CAMP program destroyed some 4.5 million plants, according to records kept by Humboldt State University. $2 for 2 months Subscribe for unlimited access to our website, app, eEdition and more CLAIM OFFER Increased enforcement comes as California’s illicit market cannabis industry is estimated to generate $8 billion in annual sales, compared to the legal market’s $4.4 billion, according to cannabis industry reporting website MJBizDaily.

Licensed marijuana growers and retailers blame the illicit dealers for hindering their growth, and have called for the state to rethink taxes levied on the industry to help them compete. Over 13 weeks this year, the CAMP program seized more than 180,000 pounds of marijuana and 165 weapons, and removed more than 67,000 pounds of cultivation infrastructure, according to the Attorney General’s Office. Bonta on Monday called for a six-month review of the CAMP program, which is conducted in partnership with local, state and federal agencies, in order to adapt the program to changes to the law since the program first was initiated in the 1980s. “Illegal and unlicensed marijuana planting is bad for our environment, bad for our economy, and bad for the health and safety of our communities,” Bonta said in a statement. “Today, I’m directing my office to review the CAMP program and ensure that we are using our resources to effectively address the environmental, labor, and economic impacts of illegal cultivation. From dumping toxic chemicals in our waterways to cheating the state out of millions of tax dollars, illicit marijuana grows have far-reaching impacts and unintended consequences.”


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Two Ohio House Republicans on Tuesday proposed legalizing marijuana for recreational use in Ohio.

In legislation that has not yet been formally introduced, Reps. Jamie Callender and Ron Ferguson pitched a program that would allow Ohioans 21 and older to purchase marijuana from licensed distributors or grow up to six plants in their home.

“Adults should be able to make decisions for themselves,” Ferguson said. “That’s what this bill is about.”

The bill would impose a 10% sales tax on marijuana. As drafted, 25% of the revenue would go to support law enforcement, and another 25% would go toward mental health services with a focus on substance use recovery efforts. Adults could lawfully possess up to five ounces of marijuana.

The sponsors acknowledged the bill’s trajectory would be somewhat dicey: They said the House Speaker is hesitant on the issue; the governor and Senate President have expressed more explicit opposition.

However, the 2020 elections were a banner year for marijuana, notching ballot referendum wins even in GOP strongholds like Montana and South Dakota. Eighteen states, plus Washington D.C., have legalized marijuana for adult recreational use, according to July research from the National Conference of State Legislatures. Thirty-six, including Ohio, have legalized marijuana for medicinal use.

“[The Speaker] is generally unfavorable to recreational use,” Callender said. “However, he does read the tea leaves, and he is giving us a chance to prove that this is a reasonable option.”

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 Mississippians prepare to protest in front of the governor’s mansion in Jackson, demanding Governor Tate Reeves to call a special session for the Mississippi Medical Cannabis Act.

Reeves told lawmakers that if both sides, Republican and Democrat, were able to come to a consensus and draft a bill for a medical cannabis program, he would call a special session.

It’s been three weeks since a consensus was reached and a bill submitted, and Reeves has yet to call a special session, prompting this upcoming protest.

“I hope he’s ready for karaoke because we’ve got loudspeakers; we’ve got tents. We’re going to be there until we get our session,” said Zack Wilson, Vice President of We are the 74.

After working with his local legislators and protesting in town squares, Zack Wilson is done waiting.

Wilson’s group We are the 74, representing the 74% of Mississippians who voted for a medical cannabis initiative in the November 2020 elections that was later overturned in State Supreme Court, is heading for Jackson on Monday afternoon.

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Sen. Mitch McConnell didn’t know what he was doing when he passed the 2018 Farm Bill. The bill included his provision that legalized industrial hemp, a form of cannabis that can be made into a wide variety of products including cannabidiol, a non-intoxicating cannabis compound commonly called CBD. That part was intentional — the law quickly launched a multi-billion dollar industry that put the once-obscure CBD compound into lattes, seltzers and hundreds of CVS stores across the country.

But after three years it appears one of the law’s biggest impacts was entirely unintentional: It accidentally created a booming market for synthetic THC, marijuana’s primary intoxicant. 

The same type of CBD that’s for sale at CVS is now being synthetically converted into THC and packaged into vape cartridges and gummy bears. Thanks to a loophole in the 2018 Farm Bill, these drugs are marketed as a “legal high” and sold online and in states where marijuana remains illegal.

But chemists warn that these drugs can contain hazardous solvents, acids and unknown compounds. When FiveThirtyEight legally purchased hemp-derived THC products for testing, we found illegal levels of THC and a variety of mystery compounds that could not be identified. There are no federal safety testing requirements for these products, and while hemp companies occasionally publish test results, some brands have been caught using fake test documents.

The 2018 Farm Bill opened the market for online retailers to sell hemp derivatives that can get you high. 

Sales data for the unregulated hemp market is difficult to track but Delta-8-THC, the most popular of these hemp-derived intoxicants, is considered by some industry insiders to be the fastest growing product in the hemp industry. Google search data indicates that interest in these hemp-derived drugs is heavily concentrated in the American South, where conventional pot remains illegal, although hemp-derived THC is also showing up in state-regulated marijuana markets. In Washington state, regulators clarified in April that it was illegal to convert CBD into Delta-9-THC after a company admitted it was converting CBD into Delta-9-THC and selling it in the recreational marijuana market. Sales at licensed dispensaries of products containing Delta-8-THC in their titles increased over 240 percent between the second quarters of 2020 and 2021, according to the data firm Headset.

There’s still deep disagreement over whether any of these hemp-derived THC products are actually legal, but McConnell’s loophole has allowed these drugs to proliferate widely across the country. The hemp industry has quickly moved past selling just Delta-8-THC and is now offering an increasingly long list of synthetic cannabinoids that they can ship directly to your door. Meanwhile, cannabis insiders are warning that the country could be on the verge of a bigger public health emergency than 2019’s vape crisis, which ultimately hospitalized thousands and killed at least 68 people.

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 Some Stamford representatives want to prevent people from smoking marijuana in certain parts of the city, including on school property, but it’s unclear if they have to do anything to make such activity illegal.

That’s because a recent bill signed into law by Gov. Ned Lamont already establishes restrictions for marijuana use. The law allows people 21 and older to have up to 1.5 ounces of cannabis.

On page 134 of the 300-page bill, a section explicitly states that smoking cannabis, tobacco or hemp is prohibited in a school building or on school grounds. The bill went into effect Oct. 1.Furthermore, another section states that any person with more than the allowable 1.5 ounces who is within 1,500 feet of a school shall be imprisoned for a year.

Nonetheless, two members of the Board of Representatives — Republican J.R. McMullen and Democrat Jeff Stella — recently introduced an ordinance that would officially make restrictions on marijuana usage mirror the ones in place for tobacco consumption.
During a steering committee meeting this week, McMullen argued that there are fewer restrictions against marijuana in Stamford than there are for cigarettes.

“All you have to do is go downtown and you can smell it all over the place,” he said, about marijuana. “Right now, we don’t have regulations that would prevent somebody from walking onto school property and smoking a joint, but we do have regulations that would stop somebody from smoking tobacco.”

Nonetheless, the state law would supersede any local ordinance, and the marijuana bill signed by Lamont does seemingly set restrictions on marijuana consumption in and around schools.

The discussion on the proposed marijuana ordinance at the steering committee meeting was less about the content of the proposal, and more about the timing.

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