Vermont Gov. Phil Scott Says He Plans to Sign Marijuana Bill

The Democrat-led New Jersey Legislature has introduced a bill to legalize marijuana

The Senate of the state of Vermont passed a bill yesterday to allow free use of recreational cannabis, making it the first state on American soil to achieve legalization via the legislative process, unlike all other states who underwent ballot initiatives.

The measure now awaits action from Republican Gov. Phil Scott, who vetoed similar legislation a year ago.

But the bill's path to the governor's desk has been a long one. He also was concerned that legalization would conflict with federal law.

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Almost eight months after vetoing a similar proposal over safety concerns, 's signature is slated to make Vermont the ninth state in the nation to legalize recreational marijuana, albeit the first to rely on its elected lawmakers rather than the voting public. The Governor vetoed similar legislation past year.

Phil Scott says he plans to sign a bill that will legalize the recreational use of marijuana, but he hasn't decided yet if he will do it publicly. Lawmakers subsequently drafted a revised version addressing the governor's concerns, and that bill passed the state House last week by a vote of 81 to 63.

While the threat of federal intervention was not the driving force in the two states' moves to legalize personal possession and cultivation, but not a legal, taxed, and regulated marijuana market, the lack of legal commerce may provide some cover from federal prosecutors, who would be left looking for people with an ounce of weed or a couple of plants.

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