NORML’s Weekly Legislative Round Up

  • by Paul Armentano, NORML Deputy Director January 13, 2011

    It’s January and once again it’s time for NORML’s Weekly Legislative Round Up — activists’ one-stop guide to pending marijuana law reform legislation around the country.

    ** A note to first time readers: NORML can not introduce legislation in your state. Nor can any other non-profit advocacy organization. Only your state representatives, or in some cases an individual constituent (by way of their representative; this is known as introducing legislation ‘by request’) can do so. NORML can — and does — work closely with like-minded politicians and citizens to reform marijuana laws, and lobbies on behalf of these efforts. But ultimately the most effective way — and the only way — to successfully achieve statewide marijuana law reform is for local stakeholders and citizens to become involved in the political process and to make the changes they want to see.

    Virginia: House Bill 1443 eliminates criminal misdemeanor penalties and convictions for minor marijuana possession offenders. You can contact your state officials in support of this measure here. Virginia NORML is also co-sponsoring a Lobby Day at the State Capitol in support of this effort on Monday, January 17, 2011. To learn more about this event or to attend, please write: Sabrina@norml.org. [UPDATE! HB 1443 is scheduled to be heard by the House Courts of Justice, Criminal Subcommittee this Monday afternoon. This hearing coincides with Virginia NORML’s Lobby Day at the Capitol. Please join with fellow Virginia marijuana law reform activists in Richmond and show your support for this important legislation.]

    Washington: Senate Bill 5073 and House Bill 1100 seek to provide state licensing to medical marijuana producers and dispensaries in order to assure that qualified patients “will have access to an adequate, safe, consistent, and secure source of medical quality cannabis.” The proposed laws do not amend patients’ existing rights to possess up to 24 ounces of marijuana for medical purposes and cultivate up to 15 cannabis plants. The proposals also expand legal protections for patients and producers of cannabis-based medical products by redefining legal cannabis to include “products that contain cannabis or cannabis extracts … “including, but not limited to, edible products, tinctures, and lotions.” SB 5073 has been assigned to the Committee on Health & Long-Term Care and as been scheduled for a hearing on Thursday, January 20th at 1:30pm in Senate Hearing Room 4 of the Cherberg Building. You can learn more about these proposals at NORML’s ‘Take Action’ page here.

    Montana: Montana lawmakers are considering dozens of proposals this session to curtail or repeal the state’s six-year-old medical marijuana law. Montana NORML, our allies Patients & Families United, and various other local groups have formed a coalition to halt these legislative efforts and to protect patients rights. Please visit Patients and Families United on Facebook here for up-to-date information on pending hearings and votes. You can also e-mail your members of the state House and Senate urging them not to repeal Montana’s medical cannabis law by clicking here.

    Texas: House Bill 548 amends Texas law so that the adult possession of up to one ounce of marijuana is reduced from a Class B misdemeanor (punishable by 180 days in jail and a $2,000 fine) to a Class C misdemeanor, punishable by a fine not exceeding $500 and no criminal record. You can show your support for this measure by visiting here or by becoming involved with Texas NORML here. You can follow the progress of this measure online here and also on the Facebook page for Texas NORML here.

    To be in contact with your state officials regarding these and other pending legislation, please visit NORML’s Take Action Center here.

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

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    3. ck31 says:

      Alright go Texas, i was down there in 08 n when i was there u went to, if i remember right prison for a joint , i think a minimum of 5 yrs too ,Go Texas an hopefully all other states follow

    4. Anonymous says:

      My Goodness

    5. WantaSmokeButCant says:

      NYC is stuck in the mud with regards to Medical Marijuana. The NYC chapters web site has not been updated in months.

      Do any of you wonderful do-gooders at NORML proper have any insight into NYC goings on? Or if the chapter is even functioning anylonger?

      Thanks Paul…….

    6. Steve says:

      Connecticut has a medical marijuana bill right now too, as well as a bill to decrease the school zone area for pot possession and sales.

      HB-5139 in our House of reps is the bill title AN ACT AUTHORIZING THE MEDICAL USE OF MARIJUANA.

      I cant find the school zone bill at the moment.

      In an act of hypocrisy we have also imposed to lift the Sunday liquor ban.

      [Paul Armentano responds: NORML has been in touch with the bill sponsor in Connecticut and are assisting in these efforts.]

    7. […] the Original article This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged Legislative, NORML’s, Round, Weekly. […]

    8. Cory says:

      well its great to see that some states are tying to pass bills to improve the status of marijuana im really surprised that one of those states happens to be texas ! by any chance does anyone know about ohio ? i havent herd anything and havent been able to find anything

    9. Stompedonmyrights says:

      It is important that history be learned if we wish to regain our stolen liberty. A Constructive Fraud was place upon us, it has harmed us, it has endangered our nation. It is harmful to the welfare of the nation to have this prohibition. Our founding fathers knew these bullies were going to show up, they always do. Time to Nullify the Prohibition Laws and put an end to the tyrants rule, time for the Rule of Law.
      Liberty CAN NOT be taken, it is surrendered, I ask you folks NOW, in this moment to peacefully take back your liberty. It is simply, Be At Your Liberty for it lies in your hearts and not in the Law of the Land, not in the Legislators, nor in any of the Courts. Liberty lies is in our actions and can only be maintained by our acting upon it. Without liberty we are a Nation of sheep being lead to slaugther for the profit of the few.