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Hawaii Senate Advances Marijuana Legalization Bill

SB 669 would legalize 30 grams, reduce penalties for unlicensed cultivation and sales, and allow cultivation of 6 plants

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The Hawaii Senate on Tuesday voted in favor (22-3) of SB 669, a Cannabis legalization bill. It is sponsored by Democrats Sen. Stanley Chang, Sen. Jarrett Keohokalole, Sen. Angus McKelvey, and Sen. Joy San Buenaventura.

“For years, advocates have been working to pass legislation to sensibly legalize cannabis in Hawaii,” said Hawaii resident DeVaughn Ward. Ward is senior legislative counsel at the Marijuana Policy Project (MPP). “Now that this bill has advanced out of the Senate, Hawaii is one step closer to becoming the next state to end cannabis prohibition,” he said.

SB 669 would legalize possession of 30 grams, and reduce penalties for unlicensed cultivation and sales. It also allows adults to cultivate up to six plants within their home. The bill expunges records for possession and gifting of marijuana up to 30 grams.

The bill establishes a Hawaii Cannabis Authority. It requires medical licensees to present a medical preservation plan before converting to dual use businesses.

A summary of the latest version of SB 669 is here.

SB 669 now goes to the Hawaii House. There will be more opportunities for improvements.

A recent poll found 86 percent of Hawaiian residents support legalizing marijuana for adults 21 and over. To date, 21 states have passed laws to legalize Cannabis for adults, including every state along the Pacific Coast.

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