Two bills recently proposed by Arizona lawmakers are attempting to advance the marijuana industry in Arizona. One bill is to decriminalize marijuana, while the other is to legalize and tax marijuana for recreation use.
House Bill 2474, would make possession of less than an ounce of marijuana become similar to getting a traffic ticket, instead of a felony which is on someone’s record permanently.
Under this bill, possessing between an ounce and two pounds of marijuana would only be a petty offense. Currently, it is a felony that is punishable by up to two years in prison for first-time offenders.
The bill would also make growing less than two pounds of marijuana a misdemeanor, instead of a felony. Growing more than two pounds would become a low-grade felony.
Phoenix Democrat and co-sponsor of the bill is Assistant House Minority Leader Ruben Gallego. He is also supporting House Bill 2558, which he says would “regulate and tax marijuana in a manner similar to alcohol.”
Two of the three polls in the past year showed a majority of Arizonans support the legalization of marijuana. With this in mind, it is almost certain that at least one of these two bills will be passed into law.