The Judiciary Committee is holding a public hearing on Monday on legislation that would legalize, regulate, and tax marijuana for adult use in Connecticut.
Before the hearing, people both for and against Governor Ned Lamont's bill to regulate marijuana gathered at the Capitol.
The bill, as written now, would allow adults 21 and older to possess and purchase up to one and a half ounces of cannabis from licensed retailers.
Those in support of the bill say it’s a well thought out and necessary step forward when some of our neighboring states have already legalized or are close to legalizing marijuana.
Opponents questioned why our state would support commercializing a drug when we are adamantly trying to stop kids from vaping, for example.
“We’re seeing the impact of vaping. We saw the impact of opioid addiction. Why on God’s Earth would we be introducing marijuana now to that commercial market?,” said Deputy House Republican Leader Vincent Candelora.
“No one is here advocating for the use of cannabis, that’s not what this is about. This is about saying it is here. It is at our doorsteps. It’s on our streets. How should we as a state regulate that substance,” said Rep. Steve Stafstrom (D-Bridgeport).
The committee will hear testimony and then the judiciary committee decides the next steps for the bill.