What to know
- A bill has been put forward requiring parents to be notified if their underage child illegally owns or purchases marijuana.
- Governor Phil Murphy signed a cannabis law less than a month ago that specifically prohibits notifying parents.
- Under the law Murphy signed in February, a first offense would result in a written warning.
Parents must be notified if their underage child illegally owns or purchases marijuana on Wednesday, less than a month after Governor Phil Murphy signed the Cannabis Act, which specifically prohibits notifying parents.
The move appears to be in the fast lane after concerns the law left parents in the dark. Parliament spokesman Craig Coughlin and Senate President Steve Sweeney said they support the measure, and Murphy, a Democratic compatriot, said earlier this month he supported the idea of notifying parents.
Democratic MP Herb Conaway, the bill’s main sponsor, said the move would “better tailor the (marijuana law) to the sensibilities of the New Jersey people.
Republican minority leader Jon Bramnick congratulated the Democrats on realizing they had “made a mistake” with the original bill.
Under the Murphy Law, signed in February, a first offense would result in a written warning. The law makes it clear that the person’s parents or guardians must not be notified. A second offense is a written warning along with information about drug treatment services.
The police must provide the under 18s with a copy of the second warning and a notice of the first offense.
The third offense again includes a written warning and a referral to drug treatment services. Parents and legal guardians would also be informed of a third warning.
In November, voters voted 2-1 to vote in favor of recreational marijuana for people aged 21 and over. It took more than three months for the legislature and the governor to agree on laws to set up the leisure market.
Legislators admitted at the time that they may need to revise the newly signed law with “cleanup” laws.
After years of back and forth, recreational adult marijuana use finally got the green light in New Jersey – but what does legal weed look like in practice? Massachusetts can serve as an example. Sarah Wallace from NBC New York reports.