On Feb. 21, Maryland Delegate Curt Anderson introduced a bill that would allow the state to regulate marijuana like alcohol. HB 1453, was referred to the Rules and Executive Nominations committee.
Like Washington and Colorado did in 2012, federal marijuana laws within the borders of Maryland would be nullified.
Described as an Act concerning Criminal Law – Marijuana – Regulation, Penalties, and Taxation, HB 1453 reads in part:
(A) EXCEPT AS OTHERWISE PROVIDED IN THIS SUBTITLE, A PERSON WHO IS 21 YEARS OF AGE OR OLDER IS EXEMPT FROM ARREST, CIVIL OR CRIMINAL PENALTY, SEIZURE OR FORFEITURE OF ASSETS, DISCIPLINE BY A STATE OR LOCAL LICENSING BOARD, AND STATE PROSECUTION FOR THE FOLLOWING ACTS:
(1) ACTUALLY AND CONSTRUCTIVELY USING, OBTAINING, PURCHASING, TRANSPORTING, OR POSSESSING:
(I) 1 OUNCE OR LESS OF MARIJUANA AND THREE OR FEWER MARIJUANA SEEDLINGS OR CUTTINGS; OR
(II) A MIXTURE OR PREPARATION OF MARIJUANA, INCLUDING 5 GRAMS OR LESS OF HASHISH, 16 OUNCES OF MARIJUANA–INFUSED PRODUCT IN SOLID FORM, OR 72 OUNCES OF MARIJUANA–INFUSED PRODUCT IN LIQUID FORM, AND THREE OR FEWER MARIJUANA SEEDLINGS OR CUTTINGS;
Delegate Anderson’s legislation taxes $50 per ounce of marijuana and licenses as well as regulates the cultivators, distributors, wholesalers, and retailers. Collections go to substance abuse prevention programs. HB 1453 has garnered three co-sponsors, Delegates Jill Carter, Cheryl Glenn, and Nathaniel Oaks, all Democrats. Both the House and State Senate are 2/3 controlled by the Democratic Party, but this bill cannot be expected to pass on partisan lines.
Saying no to the unconstitutional War on Drugs, or marijuana prohibition at the very least, and reasserting control at the state level, where it belongs, is the duty of all legislators regardless of affiliation.Details