NORML’s Weekly Legislative Round Up

  • by Paul Armentano, NORML Deputy Director January 30, 2009

    Marijuana law reform bills are now pending in nearly a dozen states. Here is this week’s summary of pending state legislative activity and tips on how you can become involved in changing the marijuana laws in your area.

    Connecticut: Legislators introduced a bill this week to decriminalize the personal use of marijuana. Senate Bill 349 would amend Connecticut law so that adults who possess one ounce of marijuana or less will be issued tickets and assessed a nominal fine in lieu of criminal charges (up to one-year in jail, under current law). In the House, lawmakers will consider HB 5175, which seeks to legalize the medical use of cannabis. (The legislature passed a similar measure in 2007, only to have it vetoed by Gov. Jodi Rell.) Both bills are now before the Joint Judiciary Committee. Please show your support for these efforts here.

    Montana: Legislators tabled a pair of bills this week pertaining to the state’s medical marijuana patient registry. Members of the Senate Judiciary Committee today killed SB 212, a measure that NORML strongly opposed. However, in the House, members of the Human Services Committee deadlocked on House Bill 73, which would have allowed patients greater access to medical cannabis. A separate, more comprehensive measure to expand Montana’s medical marijuana program is expected to be introduced imminently.

    New Hampshire: House Bill 648, an act to legalize the medical use of marijuana, is now before the House Health, Human Services & Elderly Affairs Committee. A similar bill was narrowly rejected (186-177) by the House in 2007. For more information on this measure, please visit NHCompassion.org or click here.

    South Dakota: Lawmakers will hold hearings next week on a pair of bills to protect medical marijuana patients from arrest and jail. House Bill 1127, an act “to provide safe legal access to medical marijuana for certain qualified persons,” will be heard by the House Health and Human Services Committee at 7:45am on Tuesday, February 3. The House Judiciary Committee will hear testimony regarding a separate medical marijuana bill on Wednesday. To attend these hearings or to learn more about how you can support these efforts, please visit South Dakota NORML/South Dakotans for Safe Access or go here.

    To learn about additional pending legislation in Minnesota, Missouri, New Jersey, Texas, Virginia, and Washington, please visit NORML’s Action Alerts page here.

    19 responses to “NORML’s Weekly Legislative Round Up”

    1. x says:

      Where’s Utah

    2. james says:

      What about indiana? Im stressed and in need of a blunt!

    3. David says:


      Go now! Tell Biden you want the hemp and cannabis industry to thrive in our great nation. Tell them how it will create billions of dollars and millions of jobs! Tell them to legalize it now!

      Their goal is to create “green” jobs for our nation. You can’t get any greener than marijuana!!

    4. James says:

      Any Chance you guys could come down south and help with the laws here? South Carolina and Giorgia inpaticular aka the bible belt? seems you guys are always helping the Northern States. We have a battle down here in the south. We had a bill in South Carolina for medical marijuana but the Senator or Congressman died before anything could be done.

    5. Jeff says:

      Reforming Marijuana Laws Will PREVAiL!!!

      Everyone Keep Spreading The Truth…

    6. Jeremy says:

      When is the east coast going to wise up and and start following our fellow states on the west. Here in Virginia it feels like all this Medical marajuana and reduced penalties in other states is in another country. I checked for a norml group in VA and there didnt appear to be one. I wish i could find some like minded people around here.

    7. Jeremy says:

      I sent an email about HB 2468 in virginia. Ty Norml this is very uplifting!

    8. Bob says:

      I hope this becomes a weekly segment. I think it’s great to get the legislative new out there, and I feel like this could help raise the awareness in states where rallying could result in actual reform.

    9. smiles says:

      I see Texas up there…hmmmmmm… i live Oklahoma but i will move to Texas.

    10. Ian says:

      The pending legislation in Texas is pitiful at best. Basically, once you’re arrested, you can go to court and say it was for medical use. It doesn’t get at the root of the problem. But hey, any progress is good progress.