One chamber committee after another has approved the bill, but more hurdles remain
Minnesota has a bill on the table that seeks to legalize marijuana in the state. So far, it seems to be going swimmingly, as it was recently approved by a third House committee. Now, the measure’s sponsors are hoping that the same successful streak will continue when it goes through its first Senate hearing tomorrow.
Representative Zack Stephenson introduced his legislation yesterday before the House Environment and Natural Resources Policy and Finance Committee. By voice vote, the proposal appears to be on a steady track. It should be noted that there are still several more committee rounds to go before potentially advancing to the floor.
Earlier this month, the House Commerce Finance and Policy Committee approved the bill, and last week that same approach was received by members of the House Judiciary Civil Law and Finance Committee. Now, companion legislation sponsored by Senator Lindsey is being considered by the Senate, and many hope that this first hearing does not become the first hurdle, which in some states is common.
Still, the good news is that both the Senate and the House are largely Democratic-Farmer-Labor led. As such, these officials are confident that legalization will be enacted shortly after extensive committee consideration.
“As I’ve said in other committees, Minnesotans are ready. This is the year that we should legalize adult-use cannabis in the state of Minnesota,” Stephenson said in opening remarks on Tuesday. “Minnesotans deserve the freedom and respect to make their own decisions about cannabis, and we also need to recognize that our current laws are doing more harm than good.”