Will Pennsylvania Legalize Marijuana Under Josh Shapiro?

(WHTM) — Pennsylvania is one of 29 states not to legalize recreational marijuana despite bipartisan efforts to legalize it.

In 2016, Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf signed legislation legalizing medical marijuana, which according to the governor’s office “refers to the use of the whole unprocessed marijuana plant or its base extracts to treat a disease or symptom.”

the program provides access for patients “with a serious medical condition through a safe and effective method of administration that balances patients’ need for access to the latest treatments with patient care and safety.”

Since then, there have been discussions and efforts about how to take the next step towards full legalization of recreational marijuana in Pennsylvania. In February 2022, the Pennsylvania General Assembly introduced legislation legalizing marijuana for the first time, following a bipartisan bill introduced the year before.

In July 2022, then-Governor Wolf signed legislation authorizing certain financial institutions to partner with legitimate cannabis-related businesses, primarily medical marijuana operators.

Wolf and Lieutenant Governor John Fetterman also pushed for pardons for those convicted of marijuana. In September 2022, they announced efforts to “quickly pardon” thousands of Pennsylvanians convicted of marijuana-related offenses, after already pardoning hundreds of nonviolent marijuana-related offenses.

Governor Shapiro did not elaborate on political issues during his inaugural address, but stressed the importance of democracy and non-partisanship.

Since declaring his candidacy in October 2021, Governor Shapiro has tweeted about marijuana 24 times. His main message was the need to legalize and tax marijuana while erasing criminal records.for those serving time for possession of small amounts of marijuana.

In 2019 As attorney general, Shapiro said he supports the legalization of marijuana for those over 21, including regulation and taxation.

As governor, Shapiro will sign ethics warrants for his administration later this week, aides say, and make his first speech to a joint session of the legislature when he presents his first budget on March 7.

Shapiro also resigned as attorney general on Tuesday, leaving control to his six-year chief executive, Michelle Henry, 54, a Bucks County career attorney who plans to nominate Shapiro for the final two years of his term.

The Associated Press contributed to this report

https://www.abc27.com/pennsylvania/will-pennsylvania-legalize-marijuana-under-josh-shapiro/ Will Pennsylvania Legalize Marijuana Under Josh Shapiro?

Brian Ashcraft

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