New Jersey Lawmakers Planning Cannabis Question For 2020 Ballot

Recreational Marijuana
Photo credit Photo by Jose Carlos Fajardo/Bay Area News Group/TNS/Sipa USA
By WCBS Newsradio 880

TRENTON (WCBS 880) — Officials in New Jersey say it will be up to voters to decide on marijuana legalization in the state.

Democratic Senate President Steve Sweeney and Judiciary Committee chairman Nicholas Scutari announced Monday they will try to get voters to approve a constitutional amendment to legalize recreational marijuana.

The two are planning to have the question on the ballot during the 2020 election.

As WCBS 880’s Kevin Rincon reports, the issue has been heavily debated in the state for months. Democrats had promised to legalize cannabis in the state, but have been unable to deliver.

Currently, 11 states and Washington, D.C. has legalized the recreational drug.

In a statement, Democratic Gov. Phil Murphy said he was disappointed that legalizing the drug has been stalled and it’s still his belief that current marijuana laws have failed every test of social justice.

He’s hoping voters “will put us on the right side of history” by approving the amendment.

Getting the question on the ballot next year has to be approved in the legislature. If voters back the effort, the change wouldn't go into effect until 2021.