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Will Pennsylvania’s Cannabis Laws Become ‘The Gold Standard’?

Pennsylvania state flag

An increasing number of states have legalized cannabis for adult use, with even more states exploring the idea of passing an adult-use legalization law either via citizen initiative or through the legislative process.

One of those states is Pennsylvania, which has operated in an exploratory phase for a while now when it comes to cannabis legalization. 

Ten states plus the District of Columbia have already implemented some form of adult-use legalization, and Illinois is set to enact its own adult-use legalization law at the beginning of the new year.

Legalization models vary by jurisdiction, with no two models being exactly alike. It’s debatable as to which jurisdiction currently has the best law.

A bill in Pennsylvania, if passed, would make that state the most progressive in the nation when it comes to cannabis policy. Some of the provisions of the bill include:

  • Home cultivation
  • Automatic expungements for qualifying citizens
  • Social cannabis use
  • Equity-focused cannabis business loans
  • Legal cannabis delivery services

For those that may be skeptical as to if the bill, which was introduced by State Sens. Sharif Street (D., Phila.) and Daylin Leach (D., Montgomery), is as progressive as some cannabis advocates are claiming, look no further than one of the top cannabis minds in the nation. Per The Philadelphia Inquirer:

“Wow, this is impressive,” said Shaleen Title, of the Massachusetts Cannabis Control Commission. “It’s largely in line with the trend that each state’s legalization law improves upon the states before it.”

Shaleen Title wrote the legalization law that was passed by Massachusetts voters in 2016. Massachusetts is considered by many cannabis advocates to have the best all-around cannabis legalization law in the country right now.

Receiving praise from Shaleen for cannabis legislation is something that curious minds can take to the bank. If she is impressed by the legislation, it’s safe to say that it is solid.

However, just because a bill is thought out and well-written does not necessarily mean that its passage is guaranteed.

The legislation will have to work its way through both chambers of Pennsylvania’s legislature and be signed by the Governor before it can be implemented. Pennsylvania’s Governor recently announced support for adult-use cannabis legalization.

Pennsylvania appears to be moving towards legalization. Only time will tell if this particular reform measure is the one that makes it all the way to the political finish line.