New Hampshire Advocates Call To Replace Head Of Marijuana Study Commission
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The Marijuana Policy Project is calling on New Hampshire House Speaker Gene Chandler to remove Rep. Patrick Abrami as the chair of the state’s marijuana legalization study commission. The group was created last year, despite advocates’ concerns regarding the makeup of the commission, to examine how regulating and taxing marijuana for adults would impact the Granite State.
Advocates of marijuana policy reform argue that Rep. Abrami has vigorously opposed current legislation that would make possession and limited home cultivation legal, and that, in doing so, he has misrepresented the testimony heard by the study commission to lawmakers in the House of Representatives. A detailed description of these complaints is available at http://mpp.org/NH656rebuttals.
The petition to remove Rep. Abrami can be found at https://www.change.org/p/new-hampshire-house-speaker-gene-chandler-replace-rep-patrick-abrami-as-chair-of-n-h-marijuana-study-commission.
“All three neighboring states have already legalized marijuana possession and cultivation for adults, so it’s sad that Rep. Abrami and other representatives are still trying to stand in the way of progress,” said Matt Simon, Manchester-based New England political director for the Marijuana Policy Project. “The actions taken by Rep. Abrami in opposition to HB 656 demonstrate that he is simply not the right person to be leading this important study process.”
After being amended by the House on January 9, HB 656, sponsored by Rep. Glen Aldrich (R-Gilford), passed the chamber in a vote of 207-139. As amended, the bill would make possession of three-quarters of an ounce of marijuana legal for adults aged 21 and older. Home cultivation of up to three mature and three immature plants would be legal for adults as well. The bill does not establish a regulated marijuana market, and it would remain illegal to sell any amount of marijuana or drive under the influence.
The petition reads in part:
“Rep. Abrami’s failure to remain objective on this issue is no