In a significant step towards the legalization of recreational cannabis in the Garden State, the New Jersey state Assembly and Senate passed Bill S21 on Thursday, making New Jersey poised to become just the fourth state on the east coast to legalize recreational cannabis. The Bill establishes the proposed framework of the industry and is now awaiting the signature of Gov. Murphy.
Earlier this fall, voters overwhelmingly approved a constitutional amendment to legalize cannabis in New Jersey after the New Jersey legislature was unable to pass an earlier draft of the Bill.
A significant amount of work remains before sales can begin. Gov. Murphy must appoint additional members of the Cannabis Regulatory Commission, the newly established body that regulates businesses producing and selling recreational adult use marijuana. Gov. Murphy recently named former ACLU attorney Dianna Houenou as the new head of the commission. The Cannabis Regulatory Commission must promulgate regulations for the cannabis industry, and many estimate that it will be nearly a year before the rules and regulations have been finalized and sales can begin.
Alex concentrates his practice on business litigation and counseling. Alex is the author of the New Jersey Cannabis Counsel blog where he tracks and analyzes developments in New Jersey’s efforts to legalize recreational cannabis and the potential impact on cannabis businesses in New Jersey. Alex is also a member of the New Jersey Cannabusiness Association.