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Hawaii Lawmakers File Marijuana Legalization Bills For 2023 Session, With New Pro-Reform Governor In Office

Hawaii lawmakers have officially filed bills to legalize marijuana in the state on Thursday, and advocates are optimistic that the reform may finally be enacted with a new pro-legalization governor in office.

Rep. Jeanné Kapela (D) and Sen. Chris Lee (D) are sponsoring the companion legislation in their respective chambers, with more than a dozen initial cosponsors signed on in total. The measures were partly informed by the finalized recommendations for legalization that a state task force developed last year.

Kapela talked about her plans to file the legislation during a press briefing last week with representatives of major advocacy organizations—including the Marijuana Policy Project (MPP), ACLU of Hawaii and Drug Policy Forum of Hawaii.

“We now have a roadmap for legalizing recreational cannabis in our islands,” she said. “Legalizing cannabis is not just a matter of money, it is a matter of moralities.”

Here are the key provisions of the legalization proposal

Adults 21 and older would be allowed to possess up to four ounces of cannabis and grow up to 10 plants in a locked area.

People could buy a maximum of four ounces from licensed retailers every 15 days, and adults could gift cannabis without remuneration.


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