On Tuesday, Missouri and Maryland voted to legalize recreational cannabis. However, the two states have very different laws on how they will regulate the drug. In Maryland, voters narrowly passed a law that will allow for personal possession (up to one ounce) and cultivation of up to six plants for adults 21 years or older. On the other hand, Missouri’s new law will have stricter restrictions: only those with medical conditions deemed “debilitating” by doctors can legally consume or possess cannabis products. Additionally, Missourians must obtain a doctor’s note before purchasing from state-licensed dispensaries—a process that could take weeks or months—and patients cannot grow their own plants at home for fear of federal prosecution under current US laws against the recreational use of marijuana (despite it being legal in 10 states and Washington D.C.). Still though: two more states legalizing recreational cannabis is good news indeed!
Both Missouri and Maryland voted to legalize recreational cannabis Tuesday.
Missouri and Maryland are the latest states to legalize recreational cannabis. Missouri joins Michigan as the only two states that approved recreational cannabis by ballot initiative this year.
Both legislatures in these states had previously passed medical marijuana bills, but voters seem wary of allowing residents to use recreational pot without also allowing its medicinal use. The new laws will allow adults 21 or older to possess up to 10 ounces of usable marijuana and grow six plants at home (with three being mature) per household. They also allow retail stores beginning January 1st, 2020 if their respective state governments don’t move forward with their own plans for sales beforehand.
Unlike other recent legalization efforts—like those in Ohio or North Dakota—the new laws don’t explicitly permit smoking weed in public places such as bars or restaurants; however, they do provide exceptions for places that have been licensed by local governments for such purposes (which means you could technically go out on a date after work without worrying about getting busted).
The new law will take effect on December 6th.
Both states’ laws will take effect on December 6th. The new laws will allow adults over 21 to purchase and consume cannabis, though there are still restrictions regarding how much people can possess, grow, and transport.
In the meantime, residents of both states should be aware that federal law still prohibits the possession or sale of marijuana for any purpose. That means transporting recreational marijuana across state lines is still illegal and could result in serious penalties if caught by federal agents.
In Maryland, recreational cannabis was legalized with a 56% majority vote.
In Maryland, recreational cannabis was legalized with a 56% majority vote. The measure passed with a majority in every county of the state and was supported by all three major political parties: Democrats, Republicans and Libertarians. The measure also enjoyed wide support from key officials like Governor Larry Hogan (R), Attorney General Brian Frosh (D), Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh (D) as well as both chambers of the General Assembly.
The Maryland law will go into effect in January 2021.
The Maryland law will go into effect in January 2021. The law allows up to 2 ounces of cannabis and 12 plants for personal use, as well as home cultivation.
In Missouri, the new laws are set to take effect on August 28th this year. In addition to legalizing recreational marijuana, adults over 21 can now also use edibles and vape pens with THC oil; previously only concentrates could be consumed.
Possession of up to one ounce of cannabis will be legal for those 21 and older in Maryland.
You’re probably familiar with the basics of how cannabis legalization works, but let’s get caught up:
- Possession of up to one ounce of cannabis will be legal for those 21 and older; this is a big change from current laws, which prohibit possession for any reason.
- Cultivation of up to six plants for personal use will also be permitted for adults in Maryland as well.
Cultivation of up to six plants for personal use will be permitted for adults in Maryland as well.
In addition to permitting home delivery and personal cultivation, the law also allows for individuals to create their own cannabis products in their own homes. The law will go into effect in January 2021.
Two more states have legalized recreational cannabis, but their laws are very different from each other.
Both states will allow residents to grow up to six plants and have 30 grams of cannabis in their possession.
Maryland’s law is more restrictive, with residents only allowed to buy one ounce of cannabis per month. Missouri, however, will allow residents to buy up to two-and-a-half ounces of marijuana each month—the highest limit in the country.
As the first two states to legalize recreational cannabis, these two laws are going to be very different from each other. For example, the new Missouri law is much more restrictive than that of Maryland’s. You can read more about what they mean for consumers and patients here at Leafly News.
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