Delaware Gov. Carney signs expungement bill, two additional marijuana policy reforms sent to his desk!
Delaware's legislature adjourned on June 30, after making some modest but important improvements to marijuana policies. Since the General Assembly holds a two-year session, bills that did not get votes will roll over and pick up where they left off in January 2020.
The legalization bill, HB 110, was approved (8-3) by the House Revenue and Finance committee on June 5 and is now pending in the House Appropriations Committee. To pass HB 110 in 2020, it is very important to keep pressure on the General Assembly and continue our organizing efforts in the interim.
To go the extra mile, let us know if you're up for volunteering to phone bank to generate phone calls in key districts. You can make calls on your own schedule, from home.
Yesterday, Gov. John Carney signed SB 37 into law, which provides for the expungement of certain misdemeanor and felony convictions. This bill will allow for a single cannabis misdemeanor conviction to be expunged after five years and a single cannabis felony conviction to be expunged after seven years.
Additionally, two important bills passed the legislature and are headed to Gov. Carney:
- SB 45, a bill to expand decriminalization to those under 21; and
- SB 24, which would allow patients with any severe and debilitating medical condition to qualify for medical cannabis if they have exhausted other treatments, and the treatments have been ineffective or had prohibitive side effects.
Meanwhile, HB 243, a bill to allow medical patients to grow their own cannabis, was introduced on June 20 and is pending in the House Public Safety and Homeland Security Committee.
It is past time Delaware end cannabis prohibition and replace it with a system in which cannabis is taxed and regulated similarly to alcohol. After you contact your rep, please forward this message to your family and friends in Delaware.
Together, we can end prohibition in 2020!
MPP is proud to announce the launch of the Coalition for a Safer Illinois, a group of organizations and community leaders committed to replacing marijuana prohibition with sensible regulations. We know prohibition has failed in Illinois, and we think it’s time for a better approach.
If you are part of an organization that might be interested in endorsing marijuana regulation, or if you are a member of the clergy, a doctor, a current or former law enforcement officer, an economist, or other stakeholder, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please also let us know if you are a casualty of marijuana prohibition — including if you’ve been arrested or stuck with a criminal record, or if you’ve been in a bad situation due to the underground marijuana trade.
And no matter what, if you are an Illinois resident, please help put pressure on your own lawmakers to support ending marijuana prohibition. Our email alerts to supporters often include a way to easily contact lawmakers and get the message across. Sign up for coalition alerts here.
As New Hampshire legislators move closer to achieving consensus in favor of decriminalization, New Hampshire Governor Maggie Hassan says she remains opposed. She told the Nashua Telegraph last week that she did not support HB 618, a modest bill that would reduce the penalty for possessing up to one-half ounce of marijuana to a violation.
If you are a New Hampshire resident, please take a moment to call her office today and urge her to change her mind!
On November 5, voters will decide whether to approve a local ballot initiative that would remove all penalties for possessing up to 2.5 ounces of marijuana by adults 21 and older. Portland is the most populous city in Maine – where we intend to run a 2016 statewide initiative to regulate marijuana like alcohol – and a victory on November 5 would provide a dramatic boost to our efforts. It's going to be a very close election, so we need your help. You do NOT need to live in Maine to lend your support in one of the following ways:
1. Call Portland voters using our online phone bank. Our allies at Just Say Now have created an easy-to-use system that provides voters' phone numbers, instructions, and a simple script.
2. Email anyone you know in Portland. We've created a page with a pre-written email to send to your friends and relatives. It also includes tools for sharing this message on Facebook and Twitter.
3. Make a donation to MPP. If you support our work to pass local initiatives in Portland and elsewhere, please donate today in order to move the ball forward in Maine and other states.
By taking just a little time out of your day to call some voters, send an email, or make a financial contribution, you can help us make history next week!
This holiday season, Facebook users can help MPP and other groups earn money with just the click of a button.
The Chase Community Giving Challenge allows users to help decide which organizations receive $5 million from Chase.
The first round of voting ends Dec. 11, and the top 100 charities at that point will each receive $25,000. (Winners will be announced Dec. 15.) In January, another round of voting starts for one $1 million prize and five $100,000 prizes.
Right now MPP has close to 1,000 votes, but needs more to have a chance at winning. If you support MPP, and have a Facebook account, please vote for MPP here.
Yesterday, via Twitter, both Adrianne Curry @adriannecurry and Slightly Stoopid @SlightlyStoopid asked their followers to vote for us. Each user gets up to 20 votes, so you can also help support our allies, such as Students for Sensible Drug Policy, or any other organization of your choice.
As a result of the media attention that the social networking site Twitter has been receiving, many members of Congress have become active tweeters, some updating and reading their pages personally. This means that we have a new forum to interact with our representatives in Washington, D.C., one that's quick, easy, and increasingly effective.
If you use Twitter, please send a tweet asking your member of Congress to end marijuana prohibition today. In keeping with Twitter's real-time nature, we’re asking you to tweet about this great article from The Washington Post and tie it to your support for ending marijuana prohibition. Please see the message and steps below for help.
Step 1: Sign in to Twitter.
Step 2: Visit tweetcongress.org/. After you enter your zip code, the site will display your member of Congress’s Twitter account. (Note that some members don’t have accounts. If this is the case, tweetcongress.org allows you to petition them to join.)
Step 3: Post a Twitter message that “mentions” your member’s account. You can do this by beginning your tweet with “@[your member's account]” with out the quotes. For example, Congressman Jim Moran would be “@Jim_Moran” with out the quotes. Do this, and your message will appear on your legislator's Twitter page.
@[your member's account] Read http://tinyurl.com/ydwf2uj (WaPo). Legal marijuana will cut cartel violence where law enforcement has failed.
Just copy and paste the above into Twitter and customize it with your member of Congress’s account name.
Please also also follow MPP on Twitter at twitter.com/MarijuanaPolicy.
Earlier this week, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R-Calif.) launched MyIdea4CA.com, a website which encourages Twitter users to “tweet” their ideas for how to “move California forward” and then allows visitors to give each of those ideas an up or down vote. The site has only been live for a few days and already the top three most popular “tweets” involve making marijuana legal, taxed, and regulated in California.
It is encouraging that high-level pols like Gov. Schwarzenegger and President Obama are turning to the Web for new, out-of-the-box ideas but it’s a shame that they have yet to embrace the one proposal which is consistently the most popular.
Nevertheless, those of us yearning for an effective and just marijuana policy will continue to speak truth to power – and it’s only a matter of time before our elected leaders will be forced to listen.