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is it legal to grow weed in new jersey

As we unwind the cannabis prohibition at the state and federal level, issues like these need to be dealt with. And this one seems to be rather simple. How is the New Jersey Legislature going to deny homegrown cannabis in the Garden State? Just make it happen.

There is no other industry where there is an appropriate parallel. New Jersey residents can grow their own tobacco, brew their own beer and bottle their own wine at home. But marijuana? Forget about it. The Star-Ledger’s editorial board recently referred to this legal disparity as “off-the-charts idiotic.”

Cannabis reform groups support Gopal’s efforts, including NORML and the Marijuana Policy Project. Both groups advocate for consistent consumer access. For homebound patients who need medical marijuana and for adults who don’t live near a retail dispensary, residents of New Jersey need the ability to grow at home. Yet despite this attention from national groups, the leaders of the New Jersey Legislature just don’t seem motivated to fix this problem.

So, how did New Jersey find itself in this idiotic situation? Last November, the people of New Jersey voted for a constitutional amendment to legalize cannabis. But at some point during the negotiations to draft the enabling legislation, the home-grow provisions were cut out of it. Cut out by whom — and for what reason — remains unclear.

That puts police groups and marijuana businesses on the same side of the issue in a Baptist-bootlegger compromise to maintain the last remaining vestiges of prohibition. And that’s a mess.

But here’s the problem: although it is legal in New Jersey for any adult to buy cannabis, it’s still not legal for anyone to grow a single plant. If a police officer in New Jersey catches anyone growing cannabis, that person can go to prison for five years and face a $25,000 fine — for growing one plant. That is an untenable situation that lacks any legal logic, and it stinks like Mark Sanchez’s mask after the butt fumble.

New Jersey is a great place to grow cannabis. But unfortunately, New Jersey is one of two states where adult-use cannabis is legal, but home cultivation is not. It’s possibly the only thing that New Jersey has in common with the other non-homegrow state, Washington, and it’s nothing to be proud of. The good news is: New Jersey can fix it. To paraphrase a former New Jersey official, it’s time for some homegrown in Fort Lee.

Law enforcement is also interested in keeping homegrown cannabis illegal. That could be because police often use the smell of cannabis as a reason to search a home without a warrant. That’s because in most states, the smell of cannabis is still considered “probable cause” that a crime is being committed, which allows police to conduct unreasonable searches without a warrant. When homegrown cannabis is made legal, law enforcement will lose that ability because the smell will no longer indicate that a crime is being committed.

The only New Jersey legislator who seems to be concerned about this issue is state Sen. Vin Gopal, D-Monmouth County. He has introduced a bill to fix this home-grow issue, but so far it hasn’t received enough co-sponsors for state Senate leadership to take it seriously, according to a recent interview.

Police can no longer arrest people for possessing marijuana but there is no legal way to buy it right now. Marijuana industry expert Mike McQueeny says this could be a quicker way to access legal weed. Setting up dispensaries will take longer.

Gopal says it would be up to local municipalities whether or not to allow dispensaries or growers.

TRENTON, N.J. (CBSNewYork) – Could New Jersey residents soon be allowed to legally grow marijuana at home?

“We have some of the most expensive medical marijuana in the country,” Wolski said. “So many patients are just, you know, have already been impoverished by their illnesses that they simply cannot afford this medicine.”

There is a question of safety.