The Rhode Island General Assembly is poised to vote on legislation to legalize adult-use recreational marijuana in Rhode Island next week.
The House Finance Committee and Senate Judiciary Committee approved the bill on Wednesday.
The legislation establishes a 10% state cannabis excise tax that will be imposed in addition to the 7% sales tax, plus a 3% local tax for the municipality where the sale takes place.
“I’m proud that everyone involved — the advocates, the existing industry, patients, legislative leaders and the governor’s office — worked very cooperatively to smooth out the bumps and create a proposal that works for all the stakeholders. We all wanted to do this in a way that is safe, keeps revenue in Rhode Island, and is as fair and equitable as we can possibly make it. The amended bill is a collaborative effort to address concerns about protecting medical use, ensuring fair governance and recognizing that we cannot make this transition without taking action to make whole the communities and individuals who have been punished for decades under prohibition,” said Senator Miller (D-Dist. 28, Cranston, Providence), chairman of the Senate Health and Human Services Committee.
Up to one ounce of marijuana could be bought by people age 21 and over, and Rhode Islanders would be able to grow a small amount of cannabis at home. Prior to the votes yesterday, the legislation was amended to include the expungement of previous convictions for pot possession.
(Photo credit should read DON MACKINNON/AFP via Getty Images)