New law sets the stage for automatic expungement
On Monday, in addition to referring legalization to voters, the New Jersey Legislature passed a reworked bill to expunge or seal thousands of past convictions, including marijuana charges. Just two days later, Gov. Phil Murphy signed the bill into law.
This new law removes a scarlet letter that has derailed countless lives. Marijuana convictions can make it difficult to get housing, jobs, professional licensing, and to further one’s education. With 62% of New Jersey voters supporting legalization, it is particularly nonsensical to haunt individuals for life for using cannabis.
S.4151 includes several improvements Gov. Murphy requested when he conditionally vetoed a prior version, along with a few tweaks from the legislature.
Among other changes, the new law will:
- Require the courts to implement an automatic sealing process for most marijuana offenses;
- Set up a task force to make recommendations on the automatic sealing process;
- Allow individuals who have completed their sentences for lower-level marijuana offenses to apply for and be granted expungement while awaiting automatic sealing;
- Remove fees for expungement; and
- Allocate $15 million for implementation.
For more details, check out this article.
This is an important step forward to improving New Jersey’s marijuana policies. But, more action is needed to bring justice to the Garden State’s marijuana laws. New Jersey can save 30,000 individuals the trauma of arrests between now and Election Day by decriminalizing marijuana in the lame duck session. Let lawmakers know you want them to stop the arrests.
Thank you for raising your voice for sensible, humane marijuana policies!
VOTE NO on proposed county tax that would double current local cannabis tax rate
Election Day is Tuesday, November 5, and a measure appearing before Pueblo County voters would significantly hike retail cannabis tax rates. Measure 1B would raise local cannabis sales taxes from 3.5% to 6%, and a major part of that new tax is widely expected to pay for a new jailhouse.
If you reside in Pueblo County, please vote NO on Measure 1B. We don't need another tax on lawful cannabis consumers – especially to incarcerate more people.
The proposed new tax is estimated to raise $3.5 million each year from legal cannabis consumers, and much of it is expected to help pay for a planned new $140 million county jail. Many find the tax hike insulting and a sad return to using cannabis to fuel the criminal justice system. Quite simply, cannabis should not be used to lock people up, nor should cannabis taxes.
Many voters have already received their ballots by mail and have until November 5 to turn them in. Residents can register to vote through Election Day. If you plan to mail your ballot in, please do so this week. Don't delay! For a detailed rundown of the candidates, measures, and 24-hour drop-off locations and polling centers, click here.
If you are a Pueblo County voter, please VOTE NO on Measure 1B, and please pass this message along to your network in Pueblo.
Yesterday, newly elected and returning lawmakers convened for the first day of Wisconsin's new legislative session. Since the legislature adjourned last year, voters in Utah, Oklahoma, and Missouri enacted medical cannabis laws, bringing the number of medical cannabis states to 32.
And, on Election Day, more than a million Wisconsinites cast non-binding votes in support of medical marijuana or adult-use programs. In all 11 counties and two cities — both red and blue — where it was on the ballot, medical cannabis measures passed overwhelmingly. Support ranged from 67% to 89%.
Despite that massive show of support, Wisconsin patients either needlessly suffer or risk arrest to find relief from cannabis. Let your lawmakers know you want them to change that this year.
Wisconsin's new governor, Tony Evers (D), supports medical cannabis, but he can only sign a bill if one makes it to his desk. Wisconsin doesn't have a binding, statewide ballot initiative process. As was the case in Illinois and Minnesota, the only way to enact a medical cannabis law in the state is through the legislature.
So please, send a quick note to your elected officials, and share this message with other compassionate Wisconsinites.
The Delaware General Assembly convened to kick off its 2019 legislative session today! Several new lawmakers were elected on Election Day, and popular support for legalization continues to grow.
Ending prohibition in 2019 would put an end to the underground marijuana market and reduce the number of marijuana-related arrests. The sooner the state acts, the sooner it will be able to generate millions of dollars in revenue.
You can also take action and show your support by attending Delaware Cannabis Advocacy Network’s Citizens’ Cannabis Lobby Day 19. Register to attend here.
When: Thursday, January 10, 2019 — 10:30 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Where: Legislative Hall, 411 Legislative Avenue, Dover, DE 19901
It is important legislators hear from as many constituents as possible. Contact your lawmakers today and mark your calendars for Citizen’s Lobby Day 19. Then, please forward this message to your network in Delaware.
Together, we can end prohibition in 2019!
Now that voters have weighed in on the future of marijuana policy in Michigan, members of the state legislature are introducing their own proposals — some good and some not.
Most concerning is a bill, SB 1243, submitted by Senate Majority Leader Arlan Meekhof. His legislation would dismantle major pieces of the voter-approved legalization initiative, including eliminating funding for schools and roads, preventing the creation of marijuana micro-businesses, and removing the home cultivation provision.
Despite some lawmakers’ attempts to undermine the will of Michigan voters, other legislators are doing the right thing and building on Prop 1’s foundation. Members of the House have introduced a proposal to release people from prison if they were convicted of a marijuana violation that has subsequently been decriminalized thanks to passage of Prop 1. And in the Senate, lawmakers have put forward a bill that would allow people to submit an application to the courts to have previous marijuana offenses set aside.
Although Election Day has come and gone, it’s crucial that we remain vigilant and involved in the legislative process. Forward this email to other Prop 1 supporters and ask them to take action, too.
Thank you for your help — and stay tuned for more updates.
Election Day is finally here. With the help of hundreds of volunteers and thousands of supporters across the state, the YES on 1 campaign has done all it can to educate the voters of Michigan about the benefits that Proposal 1 will bring to the state.
Now, all that’s left is to go out and VOTE! Find your polling location and set a time to go there today. Polls close at 8:00 pm ET tonight.
Having trouble finding your polling location? Please email us and we would be happy to help.
Michigan is poised to become the 10th state in the country to officially end the failed policy of marijuana prohibition. Be part of this historic reform effort and vote YES on Prop 1!
This has been a long campaign, stretching back for two years. Now is when we bring it over the finish line. VOTE TODAY!
Please consider voicing your support for expanding Minnesota’s medical marijuana program!
On Wednesday, a medical marijuana review panel will meet to discuss the petitions to add opioid use disorders, Alzheimer’s disease, panic disorder, and psoriasis as qualifying conditions to the state’s medical cannabis program.
What: Public meeting on adding conditions, including an opportunity for public comment
When: Wednesday, October 24, from 1:00-4:00 p.m.
Where: Room 300N, State Office Building, 100 Rev Dr Martin Luther King Jr Blvd., St. Paul, MN 55155
You can check out MPP’s letter in support of adding opiate use disorder here, in case you want to make any of the same points.
If you are unable to attend, you may also submit written comments in support of adding one or more conditions.
Here’s a look at where gubernatorial candidates stand on marijuana policy reform: Tim Walz (D) is supportive of legalizing and regulating marijuana for adults’ use, while Jeff Johnson (R) opposes legalization but supports medical marijuana.
Don’t miss this opportunity to voice your support for marijuana policy reform, and be sure to get out and vote!
With less than three weeks until Election Day, efforts to pass Measure 3, which would legalize marijuana for adults in North Dakota, are ramping up. While opponents rely on the standard prohibitionist fear tactics, the Yes on 3 team is sharing a positive message of personal freedom and criminal justice reform with their neighbors across the state.
In a sign of growing support, state Republican legislative leaders Rep. Rick Becker and Rep. Luke Simons recently made public statements in favor of the legalization initiative. Legendary travel host and anti-prohibition activist Rick Steves also visited the state to tout the benefits of legalizing marijuana, which he’s seen in his home state of Washington.
Thanks to the tireless efforts of volunteer advocates, North Dakota could become the next state to legalize marijuana for adults.
With our help, they can win this.
Analysis: Michigan legalization measure would generate $520 million in new tax revenue over five years
A recent study of the potential fiscal impacts of legalizing marijuana in Michigan found that passage of Prop 1 would generate over half a billion dollars in additional revenue for the state in the first five years of implementation. Read local coverage of the analysis here.
Much of the revenue generated from marijuana would be directed to Michigan’s roads, schools, and local communities, which are currently underfunded.
The report, conducted by marijuana policy consulting firm VS Strategies, made predictions based on a model that drew upon analysis of multiple data sources. By 2023, the study predicts that total annual marijuana sales will exceed $800 million in Michigan. Read the detailed findings of the analysis here.
Election Day is just over a month away, and voters will soon be receiving absentee ballots. There’s not much time left, and the YES on 1 campaign needs your help to ensure the measure passes. Chip in with a contribution today to help them dispel the fear tactics and propaganda of their prohibitionist opponents.
Great news! The Detroit Free Press, one of Michigan’s largest media outlets, has endorsed the Yes on 1 legalization campaign!
The paper’s supportive editorial echoed many of the Yes on 1 campaign’s core messages: marijuana prohibition wastes law enforcement resources, unfairly harms communities of color, and prevents the state from collecting millions in tax revenue that could fund critical social programs. This is a huge boost for Prop 1, but we have to make sure the momentum is carried forward into November.
You can help the Yes on 1 team by making a donation here. Supporters can also promote the effort by picking up Yes on 1 gear from the new campaign store. There, you’ll find some great items, including t-shirts, hoodies, and yard signs, with the official Yes on 1 logo.
We’re just a few weeks away from Election Day (November 6). Michigan residents should visit the Secretary of State’s voter page to get information about polling locations, absentee voting, and more. The deadline to register to vote is October 9. If you’re not already registered, click here for the registration form. Be sure to fill it out and deliver it to your city or town clerk’s office by October 9.
If you have friends or family in Michigan, please forward this email to them and ask them to vote “Yes” on Prop 1. I’m confident that if enough people pitch in, we’ll be celebrating another major victory on November 6.