House speaker and now gubernatorial candidate Shap Smith has come out in favor of the legalization of marijuana and says he'll push for a bill in the 2016 session. Momentum for legalization has been building in the state and many proponents have hopes for action next year.
Meanwhile, the effects of legalization - on the economy, public health, and more - has been the subject of research by the state and others. And other states that have legalized recreational use of marijuana are being closely watched for insight into how it all might work here.
We're talking to Matt Simon, New England political director for the Marijuana Policy Project. And to Margo Austin, a Burlington High School Counselor opposed to legalization. Also joining us will be Vermont State Senator Jeanette White, and Health Commissioner Harry Chen.
Also on the program, we check in with VPR's Nina Keck for an update on a lawsuit alleging racism and misconduct in Rutland's police department.