On Wednesday, a reform to decriminalize cannabis in Minnesota was passed by the House committee. The commission is the first of the more than twelve committees that will ascend the bill legislation in the coming weeks before a floor vote.
Speaker Hortman Melissa, House Majority leader Winkler Ryan, and other legislators submitted the reform in early February. It would permit 21 and older adults to buy and possess not more than 1.5 ounces of marijuana and grow a maximum of eight crops, four should be mature.
The House Commerce Finance and Policy Commission approved the reform in a 10-7 vote.
A 2nd hearing on the reform is scheduled for 23rd February in the Labor, Military, Industry, and Veterans Affairs Policy and Finance Committee.
Winkler’s reform is similar to a bill he launched in 2020, with minor strategic changes. He led the national listening to acquire public input before the measure’s launch and dubbed it the ‘ best authorization reform across the nation’. However, it didn’t advance past that session.
According to the legalization, social equity will be prioritized by offering diverse licensing and safeguarding the market against corporate monopoly. Past cannabis records will also be autonomously expunged.
On-site use and marijuana delivery services will also be legal. Unlike most jurisdictions, local administrations would be prohibited from banning cannabis business operations within their territories.
Retail marijuana sales would attract a 10% tax and part of the revenue from the tax process would finance a grant measure engineered to foster community stability and economic development.
The reform advocates for the set-up of a seven-seat CMB, Cannabis Management Board, that would oversee market regulation and issue marijuana business permits. On Tuesday, it was amended in committee to include more individuals, with social justice experience, in that board.
Folks residing in low-income areas and military veterans with zero honorable status owing to a marijuana-related offense would be classified as social equity applicants who qualify for priority permits.