|Viva la mota!|
Uruguayan lawmakers Wednesday night approved a bill that would legalize marijuana possession and use for adults 18 and up in that country as well as establish government-regulated cannabis shops where the plant will be sold.
If the bill makes it to law, Uruguay will be the first country to re-legalize cannabis in nearly 80 years.
According to the New York Times, the vote came after hours of debate and was eventually passed with a 50 to 46 vote. As we wrote earlier this week (see below), there was concern about getting the needed 50 votes, but it seems that behind-the-scenes discussions panned out in favor of the legislation.
In addition to government-run cannabis shops, people would be allowed to grow up to six plants at home or form a cooperative with friends so long as their plant count stays below 100. People wanting to get into cannabis sales as a business would be able to sell their harvest to the government, who will turn around and sell it in stores. People purchasing herb at storefronts would have to register their name with the government and would be limited to 40 grams per month.
Sadly, marijuana purchases can only be made by Uraguayans, a move that some argue will prevent pot tourism.
“This is a very innovative bill, with the state deciding to regulate the entire chain of production, distribution and access to the substance,” said Laura Blanco, president of Uruguay’s Cannabis Studies Association.
The bill now moves on to the senate for approval.