New Hampshire is taking a step away from marijuana prohibition as the House of Representatives this week approved a bill that would legalize cannabis for adults over the age of 21.
On Thursday, the House voted 236-112 to pass HB 1648, which would legalize cannabis possession as well as limited personal cultivation.
The bill is sponsored by Representative Carol McGuire and co-sponsored by Representatives Robert Cushing (D), Rene Nunez (R), Casey Conley (D), Jerry Knirk (D), Rebecca McWilliams (D), Martha Hennessey (D), and John Reagan (R).
According to poll results from the University of New Hampshire Survey Center, 68 percent of New Hampshire residents support cannabis legalization.
“Granite Staters overwhelmingly support making cannabis legal for adults’ use, and it’s encouraging to see that a strong majority of the House agrees,” said Marijuana Policy Project’s New England political director Matt Simon in a press release. “Now it’s time for Gov. Chris Sununi and the Senate to recognize that New Hampshire should not be an island of prohibition. Cannabis is objectively less harmful than alcohol, and there is no good reason for the state to continue punishing adults who choose the safer substance.”
Under HB 1648, adults would be allowed to possess up to three-quarters of an ounce of cannabis, five grams of hash, and up to 300mg of cannabis-infused products—all of which are currently punishable by a civil fine.
HB 1648 would also allow for the gifting of cannabis as long as the amounts do not exceed the bill’s possession limits.
Public consumption would not be allowed, and violations would be met with a $100 fine.
The bill would permit adults to grow up to six cannabis plants, with up to three mature, at their residence in a secure location that is not visible from other properties.
Having passed the House of Representatives, HB 1648 will head to the Senate for consideration.