Today, in a surprise hearing, at the Arizona Capitol, House bill 2657 (Hb2657), marijuana; adult use; sales; legalization, a bill written and introduced by Dr. Friese, Democrat member of the Arizona legislature from southern Arizona, was discussed and debated at the House Regulatory Affairs Committee. This was the first time in history that a legalization measure was discussed even for an informational session in a standing committee at the Arizona House of Representatives.
While numerous measures have been introduced in the past, mostly by Democrats, they never get hearings because the republican majority party does not allow for them to be heard, even in committee.
Mikel Weiser from NORML & the Smart & Safe initiative spoke on the measure as did, Tory Roberg, representing, The Marijuana Industry Trade Association, (MITA of Arizona). While legalization through the legislature is unlikely, and SAS is the most likely path to victory, it was clear from the seriousness given the topic by all present, that members of the committee are paying attention to the will of the voters, the inevitability of legalization and the changing times.
Dr. Friese was recognized by those present for his commitment to undertaking the challenge of trying to understand and deal with this complicated topic at hand. No more action is expected at this time unless Republican members of the House decide that legalization through the legislature is the best path forward.
To watch the complete hearing click here https://www.azleg.gov/archivedmeetings/