Actions by states to cut back legal penalties for marijuana use and possession are fueling momentum for the broader motion to legalize cannabis and have it function an economic engine for cash-strapped coffers, trade members and coverage specialists say.

“I expect a record number of states to legalize marijuana in 2021, in part due to the financial pressures, along with the racial injustice imperative to reduce unnecessary police-civilian interactions,” stated Karen O’Keefe, director of state insurance policies for the Marijuana Policy Project, the lobbying group behind many state cannabis insurance policies in place right now.

In current weeks, a spate of US states have sought to calm down decades-old drug legal guidelines that criminalized cannabis use and possession and disproportionately jailed Black folks for non-violent offenses.

Nevada pardoned more than 15,500 people who have been convicted of carrying lower than an oz. of cannabis. Georgia lawmakers added decriminalization to a police reform invoice that faces a difficult path to approval, contemplating that state’s Republican-controlled General Assembly and that the legislative session ends on June 30, the Savannah Morning News reports. [Read more at CNN Business]

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