Governor Ned Lamont introduced his new proposal for legalization of adult-use cannabis with the unveiling of his 2022-2023 budget.  This coincided with the release of Gov. Lamont’s proposed bill, titled An Act Responsibly and Equitably Regulating Adult-Use Cannabis.  The proposal includes legalization of possession of up to 1.5 ounces of cannabis effective January 1, 2022, and the legalization of sales of cannabis effective in May 2022.  Cannabis would be subject to a tax of $1.25 per gram of flower on a dry weight basis, $0.50 per gram of trim on a dry weight basis, and $0.28 per gram of unprocessed, or “wet” cannabis, in addition to the standard sales tax.  Additionally, there will be a 3% tax reserved for the benefit of municipalities.  The proposal also provides for automatic expungement of convictions for possession prior to October 1, 2015, with later convictions requiring a petition to the court for expungement.

While Democrats control both chambers of the Connecticut General Assembly, it is unclear if they have enough votes to pass this proposal.  House Speaker Matthew Ritter has previously pledged to introduce a ballot measure legalizing adult-use cannabis by constitutional amendment should the General Assembly fail to pass legislation.  We will continue to monitor Connecticut and provide updates as Gov. Lamont’s proposal moves through the legislative process.