It appears that Democratic Governor Tim Walz of Minnesota has signed a bill into law legalizing recreational marijuana use in the state. With this action, Minnesota becomes the 23rd state in the United States to legalize adult-use cannabis and the third Midwestern state to do so. The bill was passed with bipartisan support in both the Minnesota House and Senate, both of which are Democratic-led.
Under the new law, Minnesota residents who are 21 years and older will be allowed to possess up to two ounces of marijuana flower in public and up to two pounds at home, starting from August 1. The legislation also includes provisions for expunging low-level marijuana convictions and establishing a review board to determine eligibility for higher-level offenses. This is aimed at addressing the disproportionate impact that previous cannabis laws have had on certain communities.
The law also creates an Office of Cannabis Management, which will be responsible for regulating and overseeing the sale of cannabis products in the state. However, it’s important to note that the implementation of licensed dispensaries may take up to 18 months, and the process of expunging past cannabis convictions could take several years.
Governor Walz has been supportive of progressive measures in Minnesota, as evidenced by his recent authorization of legislation restoring voting rights to convicted felons and codifying the right to abortion into state law.