It’s been an eventful time for cannabis legislation in 2021. This has been made apparent with the fight for new laws legalizing cannabis. Particularly for states where recreational or medical use goes into effect in three new states on Thursday. In states like Connecticut and Virginia, legislators have passed laws enacting recreational marijuana.

Yet while medicinal cannabis use has been passed in South Dakota which happened back in 2020. Which has come a short time after the adult-use marijuana legalization took effect in New Mexico. Not all of the elements of the new laws are instantly in motion. Here’s a summary of what is and isn’t legal in each state as of July 1st

Virginia

Having up to 28 grams of marijuana for people 21 and over is now legal in Virginia. In addition to growing up to 4 plants at your home is also legal as well. Privately giving others cannabis of the legal age is also legally allowed up to one ounce. But only if no compensation is involved. State regulators in Virginia started a website in June.

Taken from the site “all records of misdemeanor possession with intent to distribute marijuana arrests, charges, and convictions will be automatically sealed from public view in the Virginia State Police’s systems” starting on Thursday as well.

Regulators can start creating rules for adult-use retail establishments starting on July 1. Furthermore, dispensaries will not open until January 1, 2024. it will “take time for the authority to hire staff, write regulations, and implement equity and safety initiatives.”

A majority of the stipulations with legal cannabis sales in regards to the law are subject to reenactment by the legislature. This can be done under the closing deal agreed to by lawmakers earlier in 2021. What this means is that the timeline could end up changing after the next legislative session.

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In the meantime, activists with Virginia Marijuana Justice will be commemorating the implementation of legalization on Thursday. This will be done by handing out thousands of free cannabis seeds to adults over 21 so they can grow their own plants at home.

Connecticut

This week in Connecticut those who are 21 years and older are currently able to have as much as one and a half ounces of marijuana. Yet there is a holdup to the rollout of people of legal age being able to start a home grow. Those who qualify as medical cannabis patients can start to cultivate up to 6 plants. Wich will be able to happen to start on the 1st of October. In regards to recreational cannabis, adults in Connecticut can begin cultivating for personal use on July 1, 2023.

Regulators are aiming to launch retail sales early in 2022.
As the state ACLU chapter notes, people under 18 can no longer be arrested for simple marijuana possession, and those between 18 and 20 who possess small amounts of cannabis can only be punished by a $50 civil fine. Legalization In Connecticut

The odor of marijuana will not be able to be used as the reason for law enforcement to stop and search people. At the start of July 1, 2022, people in Connecticut can appeal to have other cannabis convictions erased. Mainly for small cannabis cromes like possession of marijuana paraphernalia or the sale of small amounts of cannabis.

South Dakota

In South Dakota, voters passed separate legislation to legalize cannabis for medical and recreational use in November. This comes in despite Gov. Kristi Noem’s stance against either policy change. The adult-use proposal was denied by a judge in February. The denial of this bill came following difficulties over its constitutionality. As well as the decision is being examined by the state Supreme Court. Yet the medical marijuana bill is still set to be put into action on Thursday as well

Technically, those with cannabis cards can now legally have up to three ounces of cannabis. However only if they have a legitimate registration card, and regulators have until November 18 to begin issuing those. Patients who have an out-of-state medical marijuana card or one issued by a tribe of which they are a member, however, can now legally possess cannabis without arrest under guidance issued Wednesday by the state Highway Patrol. US marijuana stocks to watch

The guidance also stipulates that, even for a person without a medical cannabis card, they will not be arrested as long as they are in possession of fewer than three ounces, claim to have a debilitating medical condition, and can provide documentation related to that condition from a medical doctor.

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Home cultivation of up to six medical cannabis plants is also now legal for cardholders. But again, that policy change is still contingent on cards being issued. While state-licensed dispensaries aren’t expected to open until 2022, a medical marijuana operation is actually launching on Thursday. This will take place at the Flandreau Santee Sioux reservation.

While, the sheriff’s department of the Minnehaha County, recently stated it will not be hounding low-level marijuana cases. Regardless of medical necessity—because of the medical cannabis policy change. Furthermore, the Sioux Falls Police Department and the Lincoln County State’s Attorney’s Office also shed light on the matter. Earlier this week they said that they would be revising their enforcement policies accordingly as well.


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