A bill to legalize marijuana in Delaware cleared its first legislative hurdle on Wednesday, advancing out of the House Health and Human Development Committee on a 10-4 vote. The legislation is sponsored by Rep. Ed Osienski (D), who introduced a similar proposal last year. The Health and Human Development Committee approved last year’s measure, too, but it ultimately stalled ahead of an expected floor vote due to disagreements over social equity provisions. At the time, Osienski pledged to bring a revised bill for the 2022 session that could earn broad enough support to pass. Osienski said at the hearing that the proposal would “create good-paying jobs for Delawareans while striking a blow against the criminal element which profits from the thriving illegal market in our state.” Rep. Paul Baumbach (D), a co-sponsor of both the current and past versions of the legalization bill, thanked Osienski for his efforts to tweak and strengthen the bill over time. “You’ve listened so much to so many concerns,” he said, “and you and the staff have incorporated so many of the best ideas there are for this matter.” Pending signatures, the Marijuana Control Act (HB 305) will be released from the Health Committee.
Ben Adlin, Marijuana Moment, 01/26/2022 12:55:00