New Jersey courts have either dismissed or vacated an estimated 362,000 marijuana cases since July 1 and an additional 150,000 New Jersey residents may also be eligible to have their marijuana-related records automatically expunged in the near future.
“These moratoriums only serve to protect and prolong the illicit cannabis marketplace. Time and time again, we have seen that consumers prefer to obtain cannabis products from safe, licensed, above-ground retailers. But, absent access to such facilities, the illicit market will continue to fill this void.”
These are the first of up to 360,000 cases and convictions that are eligible for vacation, dismissal and automatic expungement.
“Despite nearly seven in ten New Jersey residents voting in favor of legalization on Election Day, it took lawmakers 111 days following that vote to achieve consensus to enact enabling legislation into law.”
The measure imposes a civil penalty of $50 for those ages 18-20 caught in possession of up to one ounce, and $100 for more than one ounce of marijuana.
A5211/S3320 would impose civil fines between $50-250 for those ages 18-20 who are in possession of up to six ounces of marijuana.
Gov. Murphy is calling for civil penalties for offenses involving use and possession of up to one ounce of marijuana by those under 21.
Going forward tens of thousands of otherwise law-abiding New Jerseyans will no longer be subject to arrest, incarceration, and a criminal record for their personal use of marijuana.