By Sarah Downey | The Center Square
As New Hampshire legislators returned to Concord earlier this month, they have been looking at a slate of bills pertaining to marijuana, including legalization and allowing medical patients to grow their own.
The New Hampshire Senate’s Health and Human Services Committee discussed the proposed “home grow” option during a hearing last week.
Sen. John Reagan, R-Deerfield, who is sponsoring the bill, noted that a “home grow” option could help certain pain patients wean themselves off opioid prescriptions.
“It pretty much mirrors the bill we’ve seen time and time again to allow patients to cultivate cannabis,” he testified, according to New Hampshire Public Radio.
Another measure, House Bill 1648, which would legalize the possession of marijuana and permit small amounts for home cultivation, was recommended “ought to pass” by the House Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee on Tuesday, according to the Concord Monitor.
A floor vote by the full House of Representatives is expected to take place as early as next week.
Gov. Chris Sununu has vetoed earlier legalization efforts, stating it could lead to more alcohol and opioid abuse.
The New Hampshire Association of Chiefs of Police does not support home growing for patients.
Supporters argue that because neighboring states have legalized adult use marijuana, New Hampshire should not stand apart as a place of prohibition.
More than 8,000 New Hampshire residents are currently enrolled in the state’s therapeutic cannabis law.
Other proposals scheduled to go before lawmakers include employment protections and providing visiting medical marijuana patients with access to the state’s dispensaries.
“Now that New Hampshire is literally surrounded by jurisdictions where cannabis is legal for adults, our current policies can no longer be justified in any way,” Matt Simon, New England political director for the Marijuana Policy Project, said in a news release. “It’s time for the House, Senate and Gov. Chris Sununu to work together and move cannabis policies into the 21st century.”