A bill to legalise recreational cannabis use in Pennsylvania has received widespread support from citizens.
State senators Daylin Leach (D-Montgomery/Delaware) and Sharif Street (D-Philadelphia) last week introduced Senate Bill 350 to end Pennsylvania’s prohibition of cannabis.
Now more than more than 3,000 Citizen Co-Sponsors – a scheme to help voters engage in the legislative process – have supported the bills.
Leach said: “We’ve been overwhelmed by the outpouring of support from individuals and advocacy organisations over the past 24 hours.
“Prohibition has destroyed too many lives and has cost the taxpayers way too much. I’m happy to see how enthusiastic the people of Pennsylvania are when it comes to tackling this issue.
“There’s a long road ahead. Medical marijuana took a long time to pass as well, but together we did that, and we’ll do this too.
“I hope other legislators of both parties will join us in listening to the will of the people, and ending this horrific policy of prohibition once and for all.”
Leach and Street claim the legislation will end the “ongoing destruction” caused by cannabis prohibition and establish rules for the use, sale and regulation of cannabis.
They also intend to provide economic opportunities for people of all income levels, as well as grants and loans to people who have been harmed by prohibition that they can use to start their own cannabis businesses.
“We’ve worked with hundreds of advocates, experts and stakeholders over the last two years drafting legislation the people support,” Leach said.
“We’re confident this legislation will create an efficient new industry that’s good for all Pennsylvanians.”
The federal ‘Marijuana Tax Act’, passed 82 years ago, prohibits the use of recreational cannabis in the US.
A total of 11 states and Washington, DC, have legalised adult-use cannabis in some form.
Opponents say legislation would make pot too accessible and, as a result, expand its use and misuse, creating addiction issues.
United Food and Commercial Workers Local 1776 Keystone State and Vireo Health International announced that workers at Pennsylvania Medical Solutions voted overwhelmingly to ratify a Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA).