NORML’s Weekly Legislative Round Up

Yesterday’s NORML blog post notwithstanding, a number of state legislatures continue to move forward in support of sensible marijuana law reform.
Here are some highlights and ways you can help.

Rhode Island: House members overwhelmingly approved legislation last week regulating the establishment of state-licensed ‘compassion centers’ to manufacture and provide medical marijuana to authorized patients. Rhode Island’s legislature is the first state on the east coast to move forward with such legislation, which was approved by a vote of 63 to 5 in the House and 35 to 2 in the Senate. The margins are large enough to override a veto from Republican Gov. Donald Carcieri, who has voiced opposition to the measure. If you live in Rhode Island and want to learn more about this effort, please visit:
Illinois: On Wednesday members of the Illinois Senate passed SB 1381, the Compassionate Use of Medical Cannabis Pilot Program Act. UPDATE! On Thursday, members of the House Human Services Committee also passed the bill, and the full House is expected to act on it imminently. If you live in Illinois, you can voice your support in favor this legislation by going here and here. UPDATE#2! The House convened for its summer session without taking a floor vote on SB 1381. House members may decide to take up the issue later this fall or next spring.
New Hampshire: As we reported yesterday, lawmakers are still trying to negotiate a compromise with Democrat Gov. John Lynch, who has threatened to veto medical marijuana legislation recently passed by the House and Senate. Our allies on the ground, NH Compassion, are encouraging voters to contact Gov. Lynch and urge him not to stand in the way of medical marijuana law reform. You can contact the governor by going here and here.
New Jersey: Members of the state assembly Health and Senior Services Committee are scheduled to hear testimony in favor of A 804, the New Jersey Compassionate Use Medical Marijuana Act, on Thursday, June 4, at 10am. (Full details available online here.) A companion bill, S 119, has already been approved by the Senate, and Democrat Gov. John Corzine has promised to sign medical marijuana legislation into law if it reaches his desk. You can help support this campaign by going here and by contacting your member of the assembly here.
Delaware: Members of the Senate Health and Human Services Committee are considering legislation, SB 94, to allow for patients with a debilitating medical condition to grow and possess cannabis. The proposal is the first marijuana law reform bill to be before lawmakers in recent memory. Proponents can contact their senate members in support of the measure here.

For information on additional state and federal marijuana law reform legislation, please visit NORML’s Take Action page here.

0 thoughts

  1. Great news from Illinois!!
    The governor said he won’t veto it, correct ?
    I think we got this!!

  2. one by one, state by state, things are changing, america.
    so for all of you prohibitionists with a major stick up your ass, you are progressively losing this battle.
    its been a long time coming, and we will have our say, and our way in this war.
    Smokers of this great nation of ours, as long as we keep fighting like this we will win.

  3. If people really want to do something then whenever you’re brought for jury duty keep in mind that you ARE supposed to judge guilt based on whether or not YOU think the law is just in the first place. Towards the end of prohibition on alcohol half of all cases ended in ACQUITTAL even when the law was blatantly broken. This is the TRUE trial by jury: all cases are by jury no matter severity, there is no selective picking to avoid people who know their rights, A guilty verdict must be unanimous, 12 people selected for a variety of views and backgrounds make up the jury, ONLY the jury can find guilt. It is against the law for a lawyer to tell a jury, or mention anytime especially in court, this is their RIGHT. Neither are judges to be allowed to exclude evidence pertaining to the WHOLE TRUTH nor should they misinform jurors of their right and DUTY to determine the legality of the law. Do we not live in a country with constitutional common law with trial by jury? DEMOCRACY means POWER in the hands of the PEOPLE. How can we be guaranteed to live in a democracy when our government sabotages our right and duty to see the ultimate application of the law? TRUE Trial by jury is the ONLY way to guarantee democracy and freedom, anything less will eventually fall into despotism. If the government was not inclined to create and enforce injust laws than they would not fear a true trial by jury. Try to say as little as possible interviewed for court, you do not have to EXPLAIN why you chose not guilty it’s one of your rights that has been trampled on. If Trial by jury was never tampered with marijuana wouldn’t have been made illegal, because no 12 could possibly see the danger of cannabis if they were told the WHOLE TRUTH. Our feedom is under attack and only TRUE TRIAL BY JURY can save it.

  4. If brought up on marijuana cahrges represent yourself, request a jury, and ask counsel to be amicus curae, then hand them an issue of THE REPORT: Cannabis; Fact, Human Rights, and the Law. you must hand them the actual book the court will not accept any other kind of copy and while you’re at it read the book it is very enlightening.

  5. Let’s say it loud and clear to the law enforcement and prohibitionists.
    If you support prohibition then you support TERRORISM.
    It’s as simple as that folks. They are keeping the market in the hands of the cartels and terrorists instead of American business.
    Next time you see someone against legalization, let them know that they support terrorism. Because it’s true.

  6. Do your part, lazy stoners! Take 5 minutes and send the Reps an email; literally it takes 5 minutes and if you dont act now then you’re full of sh!t and have no reason to b!tch about the government!

  7. Still nothing in Florida that I know of yet. Really sad state of affairs. I think lawmakers think this is a joke; we will see who has the last laugh….

  8. “New Jersey: Members of the state assembly Health and Senior Services Committee are scheduled to hear testimony in favor of A 804, the New Jersey Compassionate Use Medical Marijuana Act, on Monday, June 4.”
    um… dont you mean either monday, june 1, or thurday, june 4th?

  9. Ya Illinois ! Thank your Senators if they were one of the enlightened 30 and call/write your House Reps and Governor Quinn. Get the word out to the public ! Join IL Norml. Lets make good old Abe proud and get this done for liberty and compassion !

  10. Go IL! We are making progress.
    I read an article today talking about how enforcement does not cost nearly as much treatment costs. This is only because marijuana offenders choose drug treatment over jail time, making these number incorrect. Why can’t we all look at this as a health problem rather then a legal one? The way I look at it, if someone feels they have an addiction, I want them to get treated so they can help themselves and our economy. Wouldn’t we want to spend more money on treatment for the people who really need it inorder to make them better rather then send them to jail to learn much worse habits from the inmates?
    All of this has to go on the assumption that marijuana users are going to say they are addicted to marijuana and feel a need for treatment to make them stop. The number of people that feel a need to stop smoking marijuana do so because of jobs or laws they are afraid of breaking. NOT because marijuana is ruining their lives by making them violent or abusive. When the mass of potheads start seeking treatment voluntarily, is the day that I will consider it to be a harmfully addictive drug.
    To all the parents against legalization because of the message it send to kids… the message is the government has been hiding the true of its benefits. Its not as harmful as everyone thinks. Do not let laws tell you how to raise your kids. You have to tell them what is right and wrong. Just because beer is legal doesn’t make it right abuse it. Responsible use must be taught with everything in life. You can take many different sorts of drugs and its ok by the gov as long as you cause no harm to yourself or others. Im not saying that it doesn’t cause harm to a young person’s development but that is a issue to be dealt with by the medical industry. Dont lie to your kids that marijuana is dangerous cause the strong chances that they do try it, they are going to find out you lied and question many of the other things you have taught them. Be honest, Beer is for responsible adults, the same applies to marijuana.

  11. *ahem*
    “New Jersey: Members of the state assembly Health and Senior Services Committee are scheduled to hear testimony in favor of A 804, the New Jersey Compassionate Use Medical Marijuana Act, on Monday, June 4.”
    June 4 is on a THURSDAY, not MONDAY. Its ok Paul Armentano you are still doing a great job. Just put down the whacky for a second and check your calendar. 🙂

  12. whoopsy daisy. NORML you guys forgot NEW YORK! One of the most influential states due to its namesake and the city.
    Since you didn’t know about new york I’ll let you! Our Senate health committee passed the S-4041A. Is this big? YES this is HUGE! The first year dems are in control is the FIRST year a bill has passed ANY senate committee! WOW!
    This could go all the way for new york. Please don’t leave out the state that has one of the best chances of doing it this year, NORML. Not to mention you havent updated NY News since the 18th… I know you guys are busy bees but if you can search out updated info for all those states surely new york could not be that much more work.

  13. Everyone always gets replies back from their State Representatives. THEY’RE AUTOMATED RESPONSES. I can’t help feel the “Wall” between me and my Congressman, Senator and Representative. Go ahead, compare your next reply from your own State Representatives to someone that lives in the same area you do.
    In Tennessee, we’re basically dealing with older members of the State House that still think like fuddy duds, they haven’t any plans to ever decriminalize marijuana based on their service in office during prohibtion.
    At present, Tennessee is predominately Republican, hence this is mostly their drug war. It’s their way of sticking it to you. What did you expect Tennesseans? We’re right in the middle of the Bible belt and they’re all mostly confused from getting incorrect data from their preachers and they’re so histarically fearful of the great demon called marijuana!

  14. #15 Krist:
    Yeah, things run a little bit slow in Wisconsin, BUT there is a bill being introduced this session, so please continue to write your representatives and ask them to support the Jacki Rickert Medical Marijuana Act this session.
    Even though things seem quiet right now, there is stuff happening behind the scenes.

  15. jedimonk has a point,if everyone including the ones whos life revolves around pot do their part we can accomplish this goal.there is no reason to be afraid anymore,thats what the prez wants and that should be what he gets.deep down obama wants pot reform,he wants america to be the voices of pot refrom.he doesnt want to be solely responsible for legalization,he wants america to be the ones.when norml or mpp supplie already written emails for us there is no reason to not send a email to congress,prez etc…i dont know about you,but im tired of sneaking around to be able to enjoy my wonderful way of life.SPEAKUP

  16. Just as i suspected. Hope. We need to get these poor terminal ppl their medicine then after that recreational use will follow. RALLY ROUND OUR GREEN FLAG SOLDIERS OF TRUTH! Word to wolf and jedmonk. keep our ppl MOTAvated.

  17. News Flash for every one their are now 4913 people that has signed the petition at
    I believe that they are waiting to get 5000 signutures this being said hope fully these petitions like the one mentioned as well as over a dozen others would help towards our cause. The one petition that was listed on here was started by Students for Sensible Drug Policy (SSDP)
    Lets keep fighting the fight and end this war against us “The people of our great nation” for we are a patriot and as such must keep up the fight for our rights as Americans .

  18. After 42 years of this unjust and stupid war on drugs,it won’t be over until no one remains in jail for non-violent marijuana crimes. It won’t be over until the
    establishment accepts that it is natures gift too man,and not their gift too give,or take away or tax.
    It won’t be over until they leave us alone.

  19. O ya also i started my day of with moilization. I hand wrote and emailed tim pawlenty this a.m. tellin him how despicable he truly is. ill hav written two more on that list by the end of the day. And to those states workin hard for our side th General salutes you. keep howlin wolf.

  20. It is unconstitutional, cruel and inhumane to deprive people of treatment that works for them. The fact that American citizens have to plead and beg for their God-given rights as acknowledged in the Constitution of the United States, is clear proof this is not a free country. For the record, an individual’s liberty and freedom must be allowed, even encouraged by all legitimate government, to extend to the point where there is violation of the legitimate freedoms and liberties of another. Anything less is a police state. By far the biggest problem this country has today is prohibitionists, who are almost exactly like the Taliban. Both groups are part of and represent a religious-inspired minority of political and moneyed power elites, who attempt to force their will over the populations of whole countries. Both groups use violence including intimidation, fear, damage and loss of property, fines, prison terms, torture and murder to force freedom-loving people to submit to their will and do their bidding. What I do with my willing wife of 17 years in the privacy of our bedroom, is none of the government’s business, despite state statutes which criminalize me. (And anyone who thinks they are not also a criminal, needs to read the law.) Likewise, what I choose to smoke, or not smoke, or if I can smoke at all, is no legitimate concern of anyone else or any level of government. Who the HELL do these people think they are, and what gives them the right to EVEN TRY to tell other people what they can and can not do, in any regard, when IT IS NONE OF THEIR DAMN BUSINESS!! All true freedom loving American patriots need to rid our nation of all influence of prohibitionists. And if prohibitionists can not simply leave other people alone, they should go join the Taliban, where they can keep on doing what they have been doing, the ways they have been doing it, for the same reasons they have been doing it and for the same kinds of people. Prohibitionists are not going to voluntarily give up their power over us; it is our duty and obligation to take it back, like the true freedom loving American patriots before us. Given a choice between freedom or death, only slaves hesitate.

  21. IDEA we need to buy air time and have a comercial that shows America that Alcohol and Tabaco are more dangerous than marijuana . this type of project would educate America and at the same time we may present facts example while the comercial is being run we say some thing like this ” X amount of people die daily from alcohol X amount of people die from tabaco yet these 2 things are legal yet zero People has ever dies from marijuana and marijuana is illegal. As Americans why do we not legalize and tax marijuana which is safer than alcohol and tabaco combined and help the people solve a problem. Time to end marijuana prohibition today contact your government and tell them we want marijuana legalized and taxed.”

  22. I know it’s tough to maintain mentally for so long to end prohibition. The ONLY way to loose is to give up and stop contacting your Reps. Americans are on a roll and if this year is any indication of next years progress to come. We may soon see a sad end to all marijuana web sites that support reform. 75 years of working to reform MJ with over 60% of Americans. It’s been a pleasure working with you ladies and gentlemen, readers, activist and dedicated NORML Members.

  23. As the number of states with pending legislation increases so does the pressure on our federal government. We need to do everything in our power to get more state governments debating this topic and introducing legislation. People aren’t going to stand for half of our country contradicting a federal law.

  24. All they are doing in GA is putting up road blocks and jailing more non-violent kids destroying their lives. Also they use them as slave labor its called community service….

  25. If I may suggest…
    On facebook I have started a 4:20 campaign. Every 4:20 AM and PM i shed a single truth to the public. I currently have 156 people who are getting marijuana facts twice a day on a daily basis for the last four weeks. As a result it has made people aware. I chose to do this despite what my friends and family thinks (and surprisingly most of them are supportive). With the help of other websites and NORML, I cite my sources and/or use youtube to help my cause, and sign it with a 420 money bomb with the fact (if you are familiar with facebook you will understand). I recommend all of you to do the same for those who have a facebook account. Dont be frightened or intimidated. It is time to do this, for our medicine, economy, or sick and dying, and most importantly OUR FREEDOMS are on the line here.
    Please take it into consideration. I am using facebook as a tool of truth. More people are aware now than ever before, and those who didn’t care now care, and those whom are lazy potheads on my list now visit NORML and utilize the pre-written letters NORML provides.
    Thankyou for your time.

  26. I just find it crude that you willl take time to mention these states (good job and go states!) but neglect to mention new yorks passing in a senate committee. this is NY first year with a dem controlled congress over over 30 years and first year in over 10 years the senate has even seen a MMJ bill let alone passed it in a committee.
    sick or permanently injured people count on groups like NORML to supply them with information front page! so we dont have to scour data. we most definitely dont like being ignored either!

  27. Being old it scares me Americans tend to forget. They get a little complacent and the government will continue to rape us.
    Please stay vigilant we must pull together and make our country great again. We all need to work on the major issues in our country and keep fighting every day!
    We need universal health care for all Americans rich and poor like Canada they have a great system.
    The major money people in this country do not want us to have health care. They would lose too much money they are willing to destroy more of us to insure they continue making increased profits. They allow 20,000 a year to die in our country I suppose they look at it like a necessary expense.
    We need to end the war on drugs and use the money to finance universal heath care. Then we could help people that need it and quit jailing people that don’t need our help. Some people just want freedom of choice. Their choice for relief is cannabis over liquor. All we demand is to have a choice and stop the dictatorship we have in place today. Liquor and legal drugs kill over 100,000 a year or more, cannabis in 5000 years has killed no one. You tell me what the smart choice is if we were allowed to have a choice?
    We also need to stop the buying of our country by corporations. They will destroy our world if we allow them to continue as they operate today. They pay our representatives to favor their interest and sacrifice our lives to do so. The few wealthy are getting more wealthy while the middle class is pushed closer to poverty every day. If we were to quit wasting money and put more interest into quality of life… What a great country we could have for all Americans. The key is to be responsive and represent the people not the corporations that control our country today.
    Reduce the power of Washington they control too much and use propaganda to further their special interest. Not to mention the tax money they throw away and give to corporations. They then receive PAC money from the same corporations, DC is the only place where this is not considered bribery. But we stand by and allow the selling of our representation to the highest bidder.
    Education is also a key element. Being 60 I have seen the same pattern over and over with not results. We have a money problem they cut the schools. Then they say want better education we need to raise taxes. Then the cycle repeats and the schools are still far substandard to much of the developed world. They have used this cycle of fear over and over during my life. We must demand a higher priority on education it is the key to enlightened decision making…
    OK I will shut up. Did anybody see Bill Mar last night this guy tells it like it is, I like him. I hope he does not go the way of the Smothers Brothers…
    Cherokee Fred Jesus

  28. I agree with your assessment on GA #31. I live in AL but my friend who went home for the weekend got caught with just over a gram. Her friend was driving her car and she was asleep and the officer pulled them over. The first thing he said to them was “where is the pot.” Now both of them, who go to college in AL, must go back to GA once a week and meet with their PO and give him X amount of money. After the 1,000 pot fine.
    When are we going to stop this madness?!?!
    I mean really what is the difference between our law enforcement and Mexico’s they both exploit the weakest link they can find.
    Its time America stops worshiping and putting on a pedestal those we send with guns (police and miltary)
    My classes are on the floor above Criminal Justice. It bothers me that they are considered the patriots and social workers are considered welfare baby snatchers. Police men are largely drawn to the position due to power and a natural aggressive personality. Not to be exalted.

  29. Floridians, don’t forget about the petition to put medical marijuana on the vote in 2010 as a ballot initiative! Print, sign, and mail the petition, that’s all there is to it! This is approved by the Division of Elections.

  30. #28 Tennessee Activist Says:
    May 29th, 2009 at 6:36 pm
    …contacting your Reps…
    Tennessee Activist,
    – On behalf of those apprehensive about contacting their reps, what is the best way to proceed without triggering
    backlash of LEO’s / LE’s???

  31. The world doesnt make any sense. When we do not live in a world of freedom. There isnt any freedom to be had. I see this country, and the “marijuana” users as the last segment of society to be persecuted in this country. First we persecuted african americans, then we made a stand and persecuted the gays, now we make a stand against a harmless plant and persecute the medically ill in this country who do not have access to this medicine because other people in society think that they have the right to play god. Well i’m not GOD
    i dont know what GOD wants. BUT i do know that a person in this country should be able to use what medicine works for them, without all the hassle thanks.

  32. Still nothing in Texas. We’ll be the last ones to do medical and decriminalize. Sigh…

  33. Tennessee Activist…currently there is a Bill in front of the State Senate. It’s SB209, basically it’s for what they are terming “terminal” patients. I found it on the TNNorml site. State medical representatives have until December 1, 2009 to recommend changes for possession limits (currently they are saying 8oz) and cultivation limits (currently at 12 for per patient and 12 for primary care givers per patient they care for). They are also suggesting an identification card system such as is already in place in California as well as other states. Hopefully we’ll be hearing more about it as it progresses.

  34. GA is falling further behind in all areas. The money that flows out of the peoples pockets, either through fines or tax dollars to buy more drug dogs,incarcerate and have a PO’s track down these non violent people is so wasteful.
    I read alot of news about cutting teachers, but never about the cops being cut from the pay roll. my county’s school district obtained a dog a few years ago. it has yet to locate the big find due the students have switched to pills that the dog can not be trained to detect due to them being legal. big pham wins again.

  35. to general jake, i will have a green flag flowing from my house, and will be spreading the word. the soldiers of truth shall rise up today!
    to the rest of us out there this is no longer a battle of right and wrong. this is a war for our rights as HUMANS, not as americans, not as indians, not black white, brown, yellow, or even polka dotted skin.
    we all bleed red and we all smoke green. And just with that knowledge, that makes us all brothers and sisters in God’s eye.
    and only GOD can judge us. i shouldn’t have to answer to a fed and niether should anyone else. we are NOT CRIMINALS, we have a true appreciation for gods creation.
    in the words of the late great MLK Jr.
    Keep Tokin America
    This is the wolf man,
    till next time

  36. “U.S. Customs agents got a surprise on April 9, when they checked a trailer of an 18-wheel truck crossing into El Paso, Texas, from Mexico and found more than 9,000 pounds of marijuana hidden among auto parts bound for U.S. factories.”
    Reason why I posted this is this simply points the fact I and many other Americans know about if marijuana was legalized and taxed that these types of problems with the cartel would no longer be a problem being the legalization and taxation would strike a saver blow to the cartel taking away their over 60% annual profit from keeping marijuana illegal which if legalized and taxed would be like cutting off the legs of a chicken to the cartel. Also as #8 ( through the looking glass ) Pointed out “the fact that Mexican cartels import a huge amount of opium for heroin from Afghanistan. Without the monetary flow from the sale of cannabis they would not be able to produce heroin and this would in affect shut down the Taliban because a large amount of funding for the Taliban is opium.” But hey what do we know after all will the govt listen to us? May be now they will and start to work with us “THE PEOPLE OF THE USA” put an end to the cartels reign by legalize and tax marijuana now be for the cartel does even more damage to our nation…..

  37. “U.S. Customs agents got a surprise on April 9, when they checked a trailer of an 18-wheel truck crossing into El Paso, Texas, from Mexico and found more than 9,000 pounds of marijuana hidden among auto parts bound for U.S. factories.”
    Reason why I posted this is this simply points the fact I and many other Americans know about if marijuana was legalized and taxed that these types of problems with the cartel would no longer be a problem being the legalization and taxation would strike a saver blow to the cartel taking away their over 60% annual profit from keeping marijuana illegal which if legalized and taxed would be like cutting off the legs of a chicken to the cartel. Also the fact that Mexican cartels import a huge amount of opium for heroin from Afghanistan. Without the monetary flow from the sale of cannabis they would not be able to produce heroin and this would in affect shut down the Taliban because a large amount of funding for the Taliban is opium.” But hey what do we know after all will the govt listen to us? May be now they will and start to work with us “THE PEOPLE OF THE USA” put an end to the cartels reign by legalize and tax marijuana now be for the cartel does even more damage to our nation…..

  38. not so fast number 40. im pretty sure the whole country cood b legal but Kansas wood b the only state with prohibition. Ppl in ks think that the devil poops pot out to taint our souls

  39. My objective of ending our dictatorship in 2009 just passed through another month. Billions more have been wasted hundreds of thousands are in jail more are forced into rehab or community service. Fines from non-violent cannabis offenders have become a major source of income to the law enforcement community and judicial branch’s. We have a growing parasitic industry that provides in home leg monitors and drug rehab also drug testing. Now the drug thugs are saying they use treatment rather than putting more in jail. I would be glad to see a reduction in the numbers spending time in jail. But the for profit jail system is growing I just heard on the news where Atlanta is planning to sell their main jail to a private firm. It appears the money people are betting against us. The ones that believe a victimless crime is not a crime at all. They would not be spending money buying jails if they thought we were a threat. They are still allowed to join the many that contribute to buying our representatives and growing their business. Our representatives must feel we will as in the past get over it. Go back to our existence. Continue to send our kids to substandard schools. Continue to allow them to sacrifice and destroy almost one million Americans lives a year. Because they feel they know what is best for us more-so than ourselves. They allow 20,000 a year to die due to lack of medical care. They say we don’t need universal health care for all. They say we do not deserve to make choices for ourselves. They say they can spend our hard earned money any way they like. They can throw it away they can use it to put more of us in jail. They can pay Halaburton billions and accept bribes and perks for their efforts. They can take away the few remaining freedoms we still posses. They can own seven homes have a fully paid health care plan and retire on the same amount they were making when so called working. Their kids go to Harvard or Yale and have a high paying jobs guaranteed by other ivy league click lucky few. While we continue to see higher tax, legalized spying, laws being passed based on right wing religious beliefs. We can sit by and watch another year go without change..
    Or we can fight harder talk to more people raise more money. Demand our representatives stop taking bribes and represent those they are sworn to represent. March, hold meetings, get involved. With our leaders help we will have a great America for all the way it was intended….
    Cherokee Fred Jesus

  40. My eyes are going to be glued come the 4th. Ive been working hard to get people off their ass and do something at it seems to be working. COMMON JERSeY!

Leave a Reply