Virginia’s cannabis legalization bills — HB 2312 and SB 1406 — passed their final committees yesterday. The House and Senate are expected to vote on these bills by tomorrow, which is their deadline for advancing the legislation.
If at least one of the bills passes the House or Senate this week, the legislative process will continue next week. Since the bills have been amended and are no longer identical, the legislature would probably set up a bicameral committee to reconcile differences between the two bills and make final decisions before sending the bill to Gov. Ralph Northam’s desk.
We are happy with several changes that have been made so far. In particular, we are pleased that HB 2312 no longer increases penalties for public consumption and possession by those who are underage. We will continue pushing legislators to ensure that the final bill will truly serve the interests of all Virginians, including medical patients and individuals from communities that have been disproportionately harmed by the war on drugs.
If you haven’t already emailed your elected officials, please do so, and please share the link with others!