New Jersey Senators Unveil Legislation To Legalize Marijuana

Photo Credit: Associated Press

Recreational marijuana would be legalized and the medical cannabis program would be expanded under new legislation being introduced in New Jersey.

Democratic Senate President Steve Sweeney and state Sen. Nicholas Scutari announced the new bills Friday.

The legislation comes as Democratic Gov. Phil Murphy pushes for legalizing recreational pot as part of a campaign promise. His fiscal year 2019 budget assumes marijuana will be legalized and banks on $60 million in revenues.

Under the legislation, people 21 and over could possess, buy, use or transport an ounce or less of marijuana. Towns retain the right to create their own ordinances governing sales, with a 180-day window to bar sales.

Another bill expands the state’s medical marijuana program and allows any health-care practitioner permitted to prescribe controlled substances to write prescriptions.