It's time to legalize Marijuana

"By passing this resolution we put ourselves in the drivers seat to ensure the conversation around the regulation of Marijuana in Connecticut is grounded in racial and economic justice. "

This evening the Hartford Court of Common Council will have the opportunity to support bringing in new jobs in new industries that young people are excited about, by regulating and taxing Marijuana. Back in March I introduced a resolution to support the legalization of Marijuana. In May I wrote this op-ed that explained why in more detail. This past November the Legislative Affairs committee passed my resolution with a positive recommendation to the full city council. And now tonight the City Council will have the opportunity to be proactive in finding ways to lower incarceration, empower small business, and bring in revenue to our city. But I can't do this without your help.

Please join me at City hall at 530 to sign up for public comment which begins at 6pm sharp. Please contact the other members of City Council to encourage them to vote Yes for this finely crafted resolution that has been vetted by our Legislative Affairs committee and is a pragmatic and forward thinking approach to a vital issue of importance to our city.

The people of CT are clearly with us, with a recent Sacred Heart poll stating:

- 71% of Connecticut residents support legalization.

- 73.6% of residents with children in the household supported “legalizing and taxing" marijuana.

- 83.2% of residents under age of 35 supported “legalizing and taxing" marijuana.

This is an issue who's time has come. Massachusetts is already way ahead of us, Maine has legalized and Vermont is likely next. 9 total states have legalized Marijuana as did our Nations Capital, Washington D.C.

At this point it's no longer a matter of if it will become legal, but when and how it will get regulated. By passing this resolution we put ourselves in the drivers seat to ensure the conversation and implementation of the regulation of cannabis in Connecticut is grounded in racial and economic justice. We can tell our State Representatives we want automatic release of those currently incarcerated and the expungement of records. We could ask for jobs programs and tax incentives for cannabis businesses to hire returning citizens. California and Oregon have robust re-entry programs already in use that we could emulate.We can ask for what Hartford needs, but only if we commit to being a leader of the discussion.

I will be offering the following amendment to the resolutions that passed through committee to update it to reflect the end of the legislative sessions and includes a request to hold public forums throughout the city where citizens and experts can bring their ideas, concerns and recommendations forward for an open and transparent discussion on how legalization should work for Hartford.

If you support the legalization of Cannabis, Please join me Monday December 11th at 530-7 at Hartford City Hall, 550 Main st in Hartford.

*If you have questions about the basics of why legalization is the right way forward for Connecticut, there are a lot of great resources located here.


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