Kentucky may soon legalize marijuana.
State Representative Nima Kulkarni wants to remove criminal penalties for the possession of small amounts of Cannabis, reports WEHT.
Rep. Kulkarni says Kentucky voters should have a say on the matter, and she has earned the support of various organizations. The amendment goes before voters next November if approved, reports WHAS. It requires a Yes vote by three-fifths of the Kentucky House of Representatives and Senate during the 2022 legislative session.
Kulkarni’s constitutional amendment would allow Kentuckians 21 and older to possess, use, buy and sell up to an ounce of cannabis without criminal penalty.
Kentuckians would also be able to grow up to five plants for personal use.
Her second bill would remove criminal penalties for possessing, cultivating and/or selling small amounts of cannabis. It would keep penalties for larger amounts. It would also remove cannabis accessories from Kentucky’s drug-paraphernalia statues.
The measures would accomplish the same basic goal of ending prohibition, reports Marijuana Moment. But Kulkarni said they’re meant to give lawmakers an opportunity to pass legalization in the short-term while allowing voters to constitutionally enact more permanent reform. The amendment is a “more permanent fix that gives Cannabis use the constitutional protection it deserves.”
One excellent reason to legalize, Kulkarni points out, is to cut down on the mistreatment of minorities due to unequal enforcement of the current laws. She also points to medicinal use for PTSD sufferers and cancer patients, economic boosts without raising taxes, and polls suggesting that Kentuckians approve of adult-use legalization.
“Other states taking this step are reaping considerable benefits, and it’s time for Kentucky to join them,” Kulkarni said.
The state representative cited that current marijuana laws ruin many people’s lives, especially those of people of color.
Kulkarni added her bill would help cancer patients and veterans suffering from PTSD. This represents another option for relief that isn’t a more dangerous and potentially addictive narcotic drug
The legislation would also result in a new reliable source of revenue without raising state taxes.
“I am sponsoring these bills for several reasons, any one of which should be enough for them to become law,” the sponsor said in a press release.
A Majority Of Kentuckians Approve
“Polls have repeatedly shown a majority of Kentuckians back decriminalization and allowing Cannabis to be used responsibly by adults,” Kulkarni said.
Her bill, if it becomes law, would go into effect in November 2022. It will allow Kentuckians 21 and older to possess, use, buy, or sell up to one ounce of marijuana without criminal penalty. Adults are allowed to grow up to five plants for personal use under the plan.
Remember: the bill would only legalize the possession of limited amounts of Cannabis. It would continue criminalizing the possession of larger amounts.