Marijuana

Bob Kinzel / VPR

Republican Gov. Phil Scott has vetoed legislation that would have made Vermont the ninth state in the nation to legalize recreational marijuana — and the first to do so by an act of the Legislature, as opposed to a ballot initiative. 

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The Vermont Legislature sent its marijuana legalization bill to the desk of Republican Gov. Phil Scott Thursday, initiating a five-day countdown during which Scott will have to decide whether to sign the legislation, veto it or allow it to become law without his signature.

Angela Evancie / VPR file

As Gov. Phil Scott ponders the future of the marijuana legalization bill, both supporters and opponents of the legislation are calling the governor's office hoping to influence his decision.

Angela Evancie / VPR file

A bill that would legalize possession and cultivation of limited amounts of marijuana has won joint approval in the Vermont Legislature, leaving Republican Gov. Phil Scott as the final hurdle to passage of a legalization law in 2017.

Profile of Governor Phil Scott with Vermont flag in background.
Angela Evancie / VPR

A new marijuana legalization plan has gotten some important support at the Statehouse, with House Judiciary Committee chairwoman Maxine Grad now backing the bill.

Brennan Linsley / AP

The Vermont Senate has resurrected a bill that would legalize possession and cultivation of small amounts of marijuana, but it’s unclear whether the late-session compromise measure has the support needed to pass in the House.

Angela Evancie / VPR file

There's no question that the Vermont House and Senate have very different views concerning the legalization of marijuana. In the final days of the session, some lawmakers are trying to bridge this gap with a new compromise plan.

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The Vermont House narrowly passed a marijuana legalization bill late Tuesday night after hours of debate, but the legislation is not expected to advance further this year.

The Vermont Senate passed a bill legalizing marijuana Friday in a 21-9 vote, but that doesn't mean the path is clear for legal marijuana in this state.

Almost without exception, efforts to legalize marijuana in the U.S. involve citizens of an area making the choice for their elected officials by way of constitutional referendum. Vermont’s constitution doesn’t allow for that kind of ballot initiative approach.

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Prospects for a marijuana legalization bill passing out of Montpelier this year grew even dimmer Tuesday, when key Senate lawmakers said their body is exceedingly unlikely to support the plan being considered in House.

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A highly anticipated vote on a bill that would legalize possession of small amounts of marijuana was postponed indefinitely Tuesday when House leadership pulled the proposal from the floor, after it became apparent that the legislation did not have enough votes to pass.

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The prospects for legalization of marijuana face a big moment this week: the Vermont House will take up a floor debate over whether to legalize possession of some amounts of pot in Vermont.

Neal Goswami / Vermont Press Bureau

The House Judiciary Committee voted Wednesday in favor of a bill to legalize the possession of small amounts of marijuana, sending the measure to the full chamber after Democratic leaders secured enough votes to ensure it passes.

Angela Evancie / VPR file

There have been no snow days for elected officials this week, and that’s probably because they have some big legislative deadlines to hit in the next few days.

Angela Evancie / VPR file

Gov. Phil Scott says he wants lawmakers to pass a marijuana driver impairment law before they consider a legalization bill. But transportation officials say the kind of test that Scott wants to use doesn't exist at this time.

Angela Evancie / VPR

Speaker of the House Mitzi Johnson joins the program to talk about a range of topics, including the Legislature's reaction to Gov. Phil Scott's proposal for Vermont school budgets.

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As Vermont's House Judiciary Committee considers a bill to legalize marijuana, there has been discussion about exactly how much marijuana an individual could possess.

Angela Evancie / VPR file

Gov. Phil Scott says he won't support legislation legalizing marijuana in Vermont unless the bill contains strong provisions to allow law enforcement officials to determine if a person is driving while impaired.

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Last year, a marijuana legalization bill that would have set up a big state regulatory system similar to Colorado's failed. And many thought legalization would be put on the shelf for a while.

But new legislation being discussed at the State House would allow for personal possession, modeled after the law used by Washington, D.C.

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