On the heels of five U.S. states voting to legalize marijuana in some form last week, lawmakers in Texas are getting a head start introducing a number of cannabis-related bills for next year, including one that would legalize it for adult use.
The legalization bill is one of at least nine pieces of marijuana legislation pre-filed by lawmakers on Monday for the 2021 legislative session, which begins in January. Among the bills are proposals to legalize high-THC cannabis for medical use, decriminalize small amounts of marijuana and put legalization before state voters on the ballot. Another would shield consumers from existing criminal laws for marijuana possession if they reasonably expected a product to be legal hemp.
Many of the bills would usher in big changes for Texas, which currently allows only certain forms of low-THC medical marijuana to treat specific conditions, but the legalization measure is by far the most sweeping. Sponsored by state Sen.-elect Roland Gutierrez (D), SB 140 would legalize marijuana for adults 21 and older and establish a commercial cannabis industry in the state.