Vermont Becomes the Ninth State to Legalize Adult Marijuana Possession and Personal Cultivation

  • by NORML January 22, 2018

    Vermont Legalizes MarijuanaRepublican Gov. Phil Scott has signed legislation (H. 511) into law legalizing the use and cultivation of marijuana by adults. Vermont is the ninth state to statutorily permit adults to possess marijuana for personal use, and it is the first state to enact these reforms via legislative action rather than by the passage of a voter-initiated ballot measure.

    “The majority of Vermonters, like the majority of the American public, desire to live in a community where responsible adults who choose to consume cannabis are no longer criminalized or stigmatized,” said NORML Deputy Director Paul Armentano. “Governor Scott should be recognized for helping to provide Vermonters with a path forward at a time when many elected officials elsewhere are clinging to the failed policies of the past.”

    The forthcoming law, which takes effect on July 1 of this year, eliminates civil penalties specific to the possession of up to one ounce of cannabis, and also removes criminal penalties with regard to the private cultivation of six marijuana plants (two mature and up to four immature). Those who cultivate marijuana for their own personal use may possess at home the total quantity of their harvest.

    The measure also imposes new civil penalties for consuming cannabis while driving, and imposes additional penalties for those who operate a motor vehicle impaired with a minor in the vehicle.

    The Governor vetoed similar legislation in 2017, but had consistently indicated since then that he was willing to reconsider his position.

    Alaska, California, Colorado, Maine, Massachusetts, Nevada, Oregon, Washington, and the District of Columbia have also legalized marijuana use by adults.

    34 responses to “Vermont Becomes the Ninth State to Legalize Adult Marijuana Possession and Personal Cultivation”

    1. Bren Harrison says:

      Governor Scott did the right thing. I am happy for the people of Vermont. Other states shou
      ld also legalize home cultivation for personal use asap. All the criminals in law enforcement can now focus their efforts on something other than scamming the hard working citizens. Prohibition has been a government conspiracy since cannabis prohibition was enacted.

    2. Julian says:

      Spark it up!

      This is the pivoting point we’ve been waiting for fellow regulators.

      Our nation’s first legislatively enacted depenalization for possession and cultivation of marijuana will forever change the Constitutionality of pending federal court cases involving marijuana. None so much as Washington v. Sessions, which I tirelessly point out can and must use this historic legislation as evidence during oral arguments this Valentine’s Day, Feb. 14th.

      Tom Angell breaks down the potential for Gov. Scott to proceed with a legal market;


      Of course, New Jersey’s new governor is much more friendly to the idea and beat Vermont to the chase now that the prohibitionist grimace Chris Christi is taking the long line through airport security.

      Make no mistake… this Vermont law is worth celebrating. Sessions has renewed fear of our federal courts… and Im not just talking about the Grand Jury that is about to get Trump under oath…

    3. Terri says:

      Vermont would make 10… 9 states + DC = 10

      [Paul Armentano responds: The District of the Columbia is not a state.]

      • Julian says:

        Yup. American Citizens in the District of Columbia have no valid vote. They may be represented by Eleanour Holmes Norton to help guide us through Congress for locally legalizing marijuana, but her vote doesn’t count because D.C. isnt a state. And this is America.

    4. Mark Mitcham says:

      Each one of these legalization victories has immediate, positive consequences — specifically, the ongoing marijuana arrests that now will NOT happen!

      Pinch me, I must be dreaming! Credit goes to the Vermont state legislators! Politicians working on behalf their constituents? Imagine that!

      Thank you, activists, for doing the heavy lifting!

    5. Becky says:

      NH what’s the issue? New Hampshire LE still wants to incarcerate everyone and confiscate cash and weed for their own use. Take this out of their hands- NH law enforcement is crooked as the day is long.

    6. Ron says:

      All of the U.S. will now be high smoking the drug. What has these politicians done. Probably because most of them smoke the weed themselves. How did it come down to this?? What is our country turning into a bunch of hippies!! Marijuana is a drug, it is not a recreation like bike riding or jogging or going camping. This country is going to the immigrants and to the pot smokers, shame on us and shame on these politicians we have voted into office.

      • Dain Bramage says:

        @ Ron,
        Will you start smoking pot, just because it is legal? Is The Law the only thing that is stopping you from “turning into a hippie?” Or, would you continue to live by your own values, even if it was legal, and continue to make those decisions for yourself?

        Do you think you are psychologically superior to other people? Do you think everyone except for you is a latent hippie, restrained solely by law?

        Har De Har! You don’t understand hippies, then!

        If you can choose for yourself, why shouldn’t other people have the same rights as you?

        Don’t be so goddamn judgemental.

      • Dee says:

        Ron, calm down & smoke a doob. You’ll feel better. Alcohol is also a drug & people act a lot worse under the influence of it than they do on cannabis. This has been a long time coming & it’s a wonderful thing. Now they just need to start retail sales so the state can benefit from the tax money.

      • Homer T Salisbury says:

        Good morning Ron; Your comment blatantly shows your lack of Knowledge and your political affiliation. The words you used, Hippies, drug, immigrants and Pot Smokers echo’s the rhetoric from the POTUS’s A G the Keebler Elf. Thank God that the people of the United States have finally been educated so as not to be misled by the Reefer Madness and outright lies fed to them since the 1930’s. You are either completely Ignorant or a troll for Kevin Sabet.

      • Gentlhart says:

        Yup, exactly right, just like everybody in the US is drunk because alcohol is legal.

      • Sean says:

        Ron, are you putting us on? Surely, you jest and you are just trying to get a rise out of everyone, right? You can’t be serious. All kidding aside, reefer madness prohibition is no joke. It shatters lives and destroys dreams. It protects black market cartels, and feeds the prison industrial complex. If you are not joking, Ron, then the joke is really on you.

    7. Nathaniel says:

      So there will be no recreational stores, but if you grow you can have whatever the yield is legally?
      It sounds great, but there should be a provision in there that specifically states they are going to regulate and sell it like alcohol.
      Cool law, just a bit different than I was expecting.

    8. Matt says:

      laptop about to quit on me so must be quick….about time! But we need retail!

    9. Evening Bud says:

      Congrats to Vermont! New England is turning green. The GOP Gov did the right thing–now I know that wonders will never cease.