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US (DE): Cannabis legalization bill heads to governor

The Delaware state Senate voted in favor of two marijuana legalization bills on Tuesday, sending the legislation to the desk of Gov. John Carney, whose veto blocked similar legislation last year.

One of the bills legalizes possession of up to one ounce of marijuana for adults 21 and older (as well as equivalent amounts in other forms, such as concentrates). Under the bill, underage possession would result in fines, and public marijuana use would remain illegal. That bill passed the state Senate by a vote of 16-4, with one abstention.

The other bill, known as the Delaware Marijuana Control Act, creates a regulatory framework for a legal recreational marijuana industry in the state. It would allow up to 30 retailers and a 15% tax on sales in a system that the bill’s synopsis compares to alcohol sales. It passed the Senate by a vote of 15-5 with one abstention, surpassing the three-fifths majority it needed to advance.

The bills head to Carney’s desk, and they will need to be signed to become law. Following Tuesday’s vote, Carney’s office issued a statement saying that the governor remains concerned about marijuana legalization.


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