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Lawmakers debate when and how cannabis should be sold in the Commonwealth

Marijuana plants in Seattle.
Ted S. Warren
Marijuana plants in Seattle.

Virginia law allows people to grow up to four marijuana plants and to possess up to half an ounce, but any form of manufacturing, selling, distributing or gifting is punishable by up to 40 years in prison and a fine of half a million dollars.

At the National Organization for the reform of marijuana laws, JM Pedini is hopeful state lawmakers will fix that – allowing 15 dispensaries that sell medical marijuana to offer it to healthy customers as well.

“Democrats and Republicans for the past three sessions have yet to be able to find peace in the valley on this issue, and it still remains to be seen if the third time Is the charm.”

Pedini thinks the senate might well approve a bill from Democrat Adam Ebbin which would allow sales from dispensaries beginning in July, but NORML is not sure what the House will do with legislation from Delegate Michael Webert making recreational sales legal in 2025.

“In the House of Delegates retail sales of cannabis faces a much greater challenge, notably from House Republican leadership who is looking to Governor Youngkin for direction, and he really hasn’t provided that yet.”

Pedini also hopes state lawmakers will begin to regulate cannabis products that don’t contain THC – among them are hemp, CBD, HHC and Delta8.

Sandy Hausman is Radio IQ's Charlottesville Bureau Chief