Texas NORML’s April MeetingMarch 4, 2021
Penalty Reduction Exhibit at the Texas CapitolMarch 16, 2021
The deadline for legislators to file bills for the 87th Texas Legislature was on Friday, March 12th. There will be no additional bills filed for the session. We do anticipate hearings to begin within the next few weeks once legislators have addressed the emergency legislation which the Governor has tasked them with. Be sure to read to the bottom of this email, as there are numerous steps you can take right now to help advance our goals.
Our goals for the 87th Texas Legislature are as follows:
- Reduce/remove penalties for low level cannabis possession. This includes enacting provisions to eliminate the threat of arrest, loss of drivers license, criminal record, and discrimination.
- Reduce/remove the excessively harsh penalties associated with the possession of cannabis concentrates.
- Improve the Texas Compassionate Use Program so that doctors can decide what conditions and symptoms could benefit from medical cannabis, removing the arbitrary THC cap, and solidifying patient protections.
- Creating a regulated retail cannabis market for adults 21 years of age and older which ensures a reasonable tax rate, embraces free market values, consumer protections, and does not arbitrarily limit licenses.
- Institute common sense policies on workplace drug testing since testing for THC is no longer feasible with a thriving Texas hemp market which allows 0.3% THC.
- Address the racial disparity in policing for cannabis offenses.
- Allow for expunction or non-disclosure for all previous arrests and charges for cannabis.
- Remove penalties for paraphernalia.
Now is the time to take action to ensure that your representative and senator know about your support for reform!
Texas NORML wants to work with our fellow Texans to make sure their voices are heard by legislators. We want to collect testimonies again this session for hearing binders, targeted actions, and any other opportunities which may arise. At this point in the session, most hearings will offer a 5 day notice, and later it will be reduced to 72 hours. Submitting personal testimony on an issue which affects you is an effective way to communicate with lawmakers and helps them to understand how policy impacts Texans in their everyday lives.
Monday, March 29th, 2021 – With access to the Texas Capitol largely restricted, we are utilizing a digital platform to host our Texas Marijuana Policy Virtual Lobby Day! This two-part Virtual Lobby Day is designed to create meaningful connections with legislators and their staff to advance cannabis law reform.