Update: House Republicans blocked consideration of the bill, as reported by the Burlington Free Press. Nearly all House Republicans, who hold 53 seats, voted against the rule suspension for consid ering the marijuana measure. The bill would have allowed adults to possess 1 ounce or less of marijuana, plus two mature or four immature marijuana plants, beginning in July 2018.
Update: The majority of Senate members approved the new depenalization measure on Wednesday, June 21 — on the first day of the special session. The measure awaits action from the House tomorrow. It is unclear at this time whether House members will suspend the rules to debate the bill. Please call your House member now and urge that they allow debate on this important marijuana law reform legislation.
Update: Governor Scott and legislative leaders have agreed to a compromise depenalization measure. Lawmakers now need to gain two-thirds agreement among lawmakers in order to suspend House rules so that the issue can be further debated in this week’s special session.
Update: Lawmakers have sent a revised depenalization bill to Gov. Scott for his consideration during a special legislative session. The bill would eliminate criminal and civil penalities regarding the possession of up to one ounce of cannabis and/or the cultivation of two mature plants. The bill also imposes civil fines for marijuana use while in a vehicle.
The Governor said that he did not support the legislation as written, but that remains open to working with lawmakers over the summer on ways to amend the state’s cannabis policies. Make sure that he does so.
Please contact the Governor, as well as your members of the House and Senate, in support of a legislative compromise that will free responsible Vermont adults from the threat of criminal arrest or civil fines for possessing personal use amounts of marijuana.
Fifty-seven percent of Vermont voters support “allowing adults who are 21 or older to use, possess, and securely grow marijuana.” Please continue to urge lawmakers to implement the will of the people.