Reports: NJ lawmakers hope to vote on recreational marijuana this month
Legalized marijuana in New Jersey may be happening sooner rather than later.
Reports from multiple outlets this weekend indicate New Jersey legislators hope to vote on a proposal by the end of this month that would make marijuana legal for adult use.
Gov. Phil Murphy has long wanted marijuana to be legal, and campaigned on the issue in 2017. Murphy said during his State of the State address in January it’s something he hopes to accomplish.
“By legalizing adult use marijuana, first and foremost, we can reverse the inequality and unfairness left from years of failed drug policies, and shift public safety resources to where they can do the most good,” said Gov. Murphy.
The barrier to legalizing marijuana has not been because of Republicans as much as some of Murphy's fellow Democrats.
Murphy, state Senate President Steve Sweeney and Assembly Speaker Craig Coughlin have clashed about how to tax legal marijuana in the past, but now it seems like they've reached an agreement.
The deal reached last week would tax marijuana at $42 per ounce. They've also agreed that the governor will have more of a say in setting up the regulatory commission that will administer the details of legal pot sales.
Still, police have said they don't currently have the tools or training to determine if a driver is legally impaired due to marijuana use.
Murphy says he wants the records of those charged with marijuana crimes expunged.