NORTH DAKOTA HOUSE ADVANCES ADULT-USE CANNABIS LEGALIZATION

In #NorthDakota, the state #House advances two bills to legalize, regulate, and #tax #recreational marijuana. House bill 1420, which passed by a 56-38 vote, would allow adults 21 and older to purchase and possess up to an #ounce of #cannabis, while banning home #cultivation. It would also restrict consumption to private residences, as well as put the state’s department of #health in charge of licensing as many as 18 #dispensaries and 7 #manufacturing facilities, with sales beginning July 1st of 2022. A separate measure proposes a 15 percent sales tax, of which 3 percent would go back to local municipalities, and a 10 percent levy on #wholesale transactions. Though the legalization proposal’s #chief sponsor, #Republican rep Jason Dockter, personally opposes the policy change, he recognizes its inevitability and prefers the #legislature take preemptive action instead of letting #voters approve a more expansive framework via ballot measure. Though residents rejected adult-use cannabis legalization in 2018, established or pending cannabis markets of North Dakota’s neighbors, like #Montana and #Canada, have put increasing pressure on the state. The house legislation’s chances of passing the senate and eventually Republican governor Doug Burgum, are unclear.

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