This week’s update highlights legislative advancements in several states, including Colorado, Delaware, Louisiana, Missouri, New Hampshire, Oklahoma, and South Carolina.
Senate Bill 099 streamlines and expands the record sealing process for those with marijuana-related records. This legislation also provides employment and tenant protections for those whose records have been sealed..
Update: Members of the House and Senate have voted to advance SB 099.
Legislation is pending, House Bill 371, to remove all penalties associated with either the possession or the not-for-profit transfer of up to one ounce of marijuana by adults. Possession above this limit and the public consumption of marijuana would still be classified as a misdemeanor.
Update: House members voted 26 to 14 to advance the measure to the Senate.
House Bill 774 facilitates the process for those seeking to have their past marijuana convictions expunged.
Update: HB 774 was heard this week by the House Criminal Justice Committee where it was passed with amendments.
House Bill 629 prohibits the warrantless search of a person’s residence based solely upon the odor of marijuana.
Update: HB 629 was heard this week by the House Criminal Justice Committee where it passed by a vote of 7 to 2.
NORML opposes House Bill 700, which seeks to reimpose criminal penalties for the possession of marijuana by individuals under eighteen years of age.
Update: HB 700 is scheduled to be debated on the House floor on May 9.
HJR 83 seeks to place a ballot question before voters regarding the legalization of marijuana by adults.
Update: HJR 83 was heard this week in the Special Committee on Criminal Justice. Committee members passed it by a vote of 7 to 2.
Senators voted last week against the passage of House Bill 629, which sought to eliminate civil fines for minor marijuana possession and would have legalized the limited home cultivation of cannabis. House members had passed the bill by a vote of 241 to 113, but members of the Senate decided 15 to 9 against the measure. This week, House lawmakers attached the language as an amendment to an unrelated bill (SB 299), forcing the Senate to once again act on it.
Oklahoma has one of the most robust medical cannabis access programs in the nation. Lawmakers seeking to reign in this program have advanced House Bill 3208, which seeks to impose a moratorium on the processing and issuing of new medical marijuana business licenses. If passed, the bill would allow the moratorium to remain in effect for however long the Oklahoma Medical Marijuana Authority “deems necessary.” NORML opposes the passage of HB 3208.
Update: Differing versions of HB 3208 have passed the House and Senate. The bill now awaits action by a conference committee, the Conference Committee on Alcohol, Tobacco and Controlled Substances.
S. 150: The South Carolina Compassionate Care Act allows qualifying patients to use, purchase, and possess medical cannabis with a physician’s recommendation.
Update: After having been passed in the Senate weeks ago and advancing through several House committees, S.150 was killed this week following a procedural floor vote.