Rhode Island House and Senate committees to discuss legalizing marijuana this week

Rhode Island State House and Senate committees will meet this week to discuss legalizing recreational use of marijuana in Rhode Island. Both committees are set to meet on May 18.

The two committees introduced identical “Rhode Island Cannabis Act” bills in March. The latest step in the  long debate about the issue up to this point, as neighboring states reap the revenue benefits of having legalized the drug.

Recreational use of marijuana has already been legalized in 18 states, including Massachusetts, which made recreational pot legal in 2016. Rhode Island Gov. Dan McKee is also a supporter of legalizing the recreational use of marijuana.

The proposed bill would legalize marijuana in the ocean state, as well as also introduce a three member cannabis control commission to regulate it. An issue that has stifled previous attempts to legalize marijuana.

On the Senate side, Sen. Joshua Miller is the lead sponsor of the bill which would make recreational use of marijuana legal for anyone 21 and older. Miller said the proposed legislation could be a major step in regulating marijuana consumption.

“To first support those communities and people damaged by prohibition,” said Miller. “With structure you get to fix a lot of what was historically done wrong, and you get to fund a lot of things going forward in our community than without a structure.”

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