A Delaware Senate committee has approved a pair of House-passed bills to legalize marijuana and create regulations for adult-use sales.
Both pieces pieces of legislation from Rep. Ed Osienski (D) cleared the Senate Health & Social Services Committee on Wednesday.
Sen. Trey Paradee (D), who is carrying the bill in the Senate, told members of the panel that the state’s existing law that merely decriminalizes low-level cannabis possession is inadequate.
“The arrests have continued and, as a result, lives have been turned upside down,” he said. “Although the civil offense is not as harmful as an arrest, the citations cannot be expunged and still appear in public record searches. This gap has caused a number of Delawareans to miss out on life-changing job opportunities due to the appearance of citations on background checks.”
He noted that ongoing enforcement falls disproportionately on people of color, adding that Delaware is increasingly “an island of prohibition” as neighboring states move to enact cannabis reforms.
I was proud to preside at today’s hearing, to release these bills today, and I’m looking forward to voting for both on the floor of the Senate.
— Sen. Sarah McBride (@SarahEMcBride) March 15, 2023
A Delaware Division
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