Public Hearing For Proposal To Legalize Pot For Recreational Use

HARTFORD, Conn. (CBS Connecticut and AP) — The General Assembly’s Judiciary Committee heard public feedback Wednesday on a measure that would legalize the sale of recreational marijuana in Connecticut to those 21 years of age and older.

The legislation would impose a special 23.65 percent sales tax on all marijuana and marijuana products at retail. This special sales tax would be in addition to, not in replacement of, the regular state sales tax of 6.35 percent, and would amount to a combined effective sales tax at retail of 30 percent.

Individuals cultivating marijuana at home would be allowed to possess up to five marijuana plants per adult for personal use under the measure.

“Marijuana prohibition has lasted 80 years,” Senate President Pro Tempore Martin Looney of New Haven. “Yet, it has been just as much of a failure as America’s short-lived experiment with alcohol prohibition. It is time we take the same rational, common-sense approach to marijuana, as we did with alcohol: regulating and taxing it.”

Opponents of the measure say that marijuana is a gateway drug and could lead to abuse of more potent drugs. They also worry that legalizing recreational use of pot would make it more readily to children and increase impaired driving.

Governor Dannel Malloy, in the past, has spoken out against legalizing marijuana for recreational purposes.

Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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