Press Releases

 

Entries in MPP (40)

Tuesday
Apr072015

MPP - Fmr. Drug Cop to Support Marijuana Bill at N.H. Senate Hearing (4/7) 

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Former Narcotics Officer to Testify in Support of Marijuana Decriminalization Bill TOMORROW (Tue.) at New Hampshire Senate Committee Hearing

 

At 9 a.m. ET, immediately prior to the hearing, Maj. Neill Franklin will join Rep. Adam Schroadter and Matt Simon of the Marijuana Policy Project at a news conference to express support for HB 618, which would replace potential jail time with a civil fine for possession of small amounts of marijuana

                                                

CONCORD — A former narcotics officer will testify at a New Hampshire Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on Tuesday in support of a bill to remove criminal penalties for possession of small amounts of marijuana.

 

At 9 a.m. ET, immediately prior to the hearing, Maj. Neill Franklin, a 34-year law enforcement veteran and executive director of Law Enforcement Against Prohibition (LEAP), will join Rep. Adam Schroadter (R-Newmarket) and Matt Simon of the Marijuana Policy Project at a news conference in the lobby of the Legislative Office Building. The hearing is scheduled to begin at 9: 40 a.m. ET in Room 100 of the State House.

 

HB 618, sponsored by Rep. Schroadter and a bipartisan group of seven co-sponsors, would make possession of up to one-half ounce of marijuana punishable by a civil fine of $100 for a first offense, $200 for a second offense, and up to $500 for third and subsequent offenses. Currently, possession of any amount of marijuana is a misdemeanor punishable by up to one year in prison and a fine of up to $2,000. New Hampshire is the only state in New England that treats simple marijuana possession as a criminal offense with the potential for jail time. 

 

The House of Representatives approved the measure 297-67 on March 11.


“New Hampshire is the only state in New England that still doles out criminal records and jail time for simple marijuana possession,” said Simon, a Goffstown resident and New England political director for the Marijuana Policy Project. “People’s lives should not be turned upside down just for possessing a substance that is less harmful than alcohol.

 

 “We hope the Senate and Gov. Hassan will join the overwhelming majority of the House — and the overwhelming majority of New Hampshire voters — in supporting this modest proposal.”

 

WHAT: News conference and New Hampshire Senate Judiciary Committee hearing regarding HB 618, which would remove criminal penalties for possession of small amounts of marijuana

 

WHEN: Tuesday, April 7, news conference at 9 a.m. ET, hearing at 9:40 a.m. ET

 

WHERE: News conference in lobby of the New Hampshire Legislative Office Building, 33 N. State St., Concord; hearing in Room 100 of the State House, 107 North Main St., Concord

 

WHO: Rep. Adam Schroadter (R-Newmarket), primary sponsor of HB 618

Maj. Neill Franklin, executive director, Law Enforcement Against Prohibition

Matt Simon, New England political director, Marijuana Policy Project

Others TBA

Thursday
Mar122015

MPP - N.H. House Approves Bill Reducing Marijuana Possession Penalties 

New Hampshire House of Representatives Overwhelmingly Approves Measure Removing Criminal Penalties for Marijuana Possession

 

 

Bill with bipartisan support would replace potential jail time with a civil fine for possession of small amounts of marijuana

 

 

CONCORD — The New Hampshire House of Representatives overwhelmingly approved a bill 297-67 Wednesday that would remove criminal penalties for possession of small amounts of marijuana. The measure will now be considered in the Senate.

 

“We’re pleased to see such strong legislative support for this important legislation,” said Matt Simon, Goffstown-based New England political director for the Marijuana Policy Project. “We hope the Senate will agree with their colleagues in the House and the vast majority of state voters that it’s time to stop criminalizing people for simple marijuana possession.”

 

HB 618, sponsored by Rep. Adam Schroadter (R-Newmarket) and a bipartisan group of seven co-sponsors, would make possession of up to one-half ounce of marijuana punishable by a civil fine of $100 for a first offense, $200 for a second offense, and up to $500 for third or subsequent offenses. Currently, possession of any amount of marijuana is a misdemeanor punishable by up to one year in prison and a fine of up to $2,000. New Hampshire is the only state in New England that treats simple marijuana possession as a criminal offense with the potentialfor jail time. 

 

“Nobody should face jail time and a permanent criminal record just for possessing a substance that is far less harmful than alcohol,” Simon said. “Granite Staters do not want their state government to continue wasting its resources on enforcing such an unfair and outdated policy. Hopefully our state senators and governor will respect that and move forward with this legislation.”

 

Three out of five adults in New Hampshire (61%) support removing criminal penalties for marijuana possession, according to a WMUR Granite State Poll released in April 2014. Only 24% said they were opposed.

 

Nineteen states and the District of Columbia have removed the threat of jail for simple marijuana possession.

 

# # #

 

The Marijuana Policy Project, the nation’s largest marijuana policy organization, has been responsible for changing most state-level marijuana laws since 2000. For more information, visit http://www.MarijuanaPolicy.org.

Friday
Mar062015

MPP - N.H. House Committee Approves Marijuana Decriminalization Bill 

 

 

New Hampshire House Committee Approves Measure Removing Criminal Penalties for Marijuana Possession

 

Bill that would replace potential jail time with a civil fine receives bipartisan support in House Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee

 

* Statements below from the bill sponsor, Rep. Adam Schroadter, and Matt Simon of the Marijuana Policy Project *

 

CONCORD — The New Hampshire House Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee approved a bill 12-3 Thursday that would remove criminal penalties for possession of small amounts of marijuana. The measure will now go to the full House for a vote.

 

“Nobody should face time in jail simply for possessing a small amount of marijuana,” said Matt Simon, Goffstown-based New England political director for the Marijuana Policy Project. “We’re glad the committee members agreed, and we hope the rest of their colleagues in the legislature will, too. This is a commonsense reform that is long overdue.”

 

HB 618, sponsored by Rep. Adam Schroadter (R-Newmarket) and a bipartisan group of seven co-sponsors, would make possession of up to one-half ounce of marijuana punishable by a civil fine of $100 for a first offense, $200 for a second offense, and $500 for third or subsequent offenses. Currently, possession of any amount of marijuana is a misdemeanor punishable by up to one year in prison and a fine of up to $2,000. New Hampshire is the only state in New England that treats simple marijuana possession as a criminal offense with the potential for jail time. 

 

The House passed a nearly identical bill last year by a vote of 215-92, but the Senate refused to consider it.

 

“Most voters do not think the state should be in the business of doling out criminal records to every person found in possession of marijuana,” said Rep. Adam Schroadter. “We’re talking about people facing potentially life-altering punishments simply for using a substance that is less harmful than alcohol. Hopefully, legislators will take this opportunity to bring our state laws into line with the values and opinions of state voters.”

 

Three out of five adults in New Hampshire (61%) support removing criminal penalties for marijuana possession, according to a WMUR Granite State Poll released in April 2014. Only 24% said they were opposed.

 

Nineteen states and the District of Columbia have removed the threat of jail for simple marijuana possession.

 

# # #

 

The Marijuana Policy Project, the nation’s largest marijuana policy organization, has been responsible for changing most state-level marijuana laws since 2000. For more information, visit http://www.MarijuanaPolicy.org.

Tuesday
Feb172015

MPP - News Conference and Committee Hearing re: Bill to Reduce Marijuana Penalties 

 

Supporters of Bill to Remove Criminal Penalties for Marijuana Possession in New Hampshire to Hold News Conference TODAY at 1:30 p.m. ET Prior to Committee Hearing

 

Bill sponsors will be joined by attorneys Paul Twomey and Jonathan Cohen, and Matt Simon of the Marijuana Policy Project, at event prior to House Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee hearing on HB 618

 

CONCORD — Supporters of a bill to remove criminal penalties for possession of small amounts of marijuana in New Hampshire will hold a news conference today at 1:30 p.m. ET in the lobby of the Legislative Office Building prior to a hearing on the bill by the House Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee.

 

The bill sponsor, Rep. Adam Schroadter (R-Newmarket), will be joined at the event by bill cosponsor Rep. Joe Lachance (R-Manchester), attorney Paul Twomey, attorney Jonathan Cohen, and Matt Simon of the Marijuana Policy Project.

 

The committee hearing isscheduled for 2:30 p.m. ET in Room 204 of the Legislative Office Building.

 

HB 618, sponsored by Rep. Schroadter and a bipartisan group of seven co-sponsors, would make possession of up to one ounce of marijuana punishable by a civil fine of up to $100. It would also make cultivation of up to six marijuana plants a Class A misdemeanor instead of a felony. Currently, possession of any amount of marijuana is a misdemeanor punishable by up to one year in prison and a fine of up to $2,000. New Hampshire is the only state in New England that treats simple marijuana possession as a criminal offense with the potential for jail time.

 

“This bill represents a big step toward more sensible marijuana policies in New Hampshire,” said Matt Simon, the Goffstown-based New England political director for the Marijuana Policy Project. “There is no reason to saddle someone with a permanent and life-altering criminal record for using a substance that is safer than alcohol.”

 

WHAT: News conference and House Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee hearing regarding bill to remove criminal penalties for marijuana possession (HB 618)

 

WHEN: Tuesday, February 17, news conference at 1:30 p.m. ET, committee hearing at 2:30 p.m. ET

 

WHERE: News conference in lobby of the New Hampshire Legislative Office Building, 33 N. State St., Concord; committee hearing in Room 204

 

WHO: Rep. Adam Schroadter (R-Newmarket)

Rep. Joe Lachance (R-Manchester)

Paul Twomey, Esq.

Jonathan Cohen, Esq.

Matt Simon, New England political director, Marijuana Policy Project

 

# # #

 

The Marijuana Policy Project, the nation’s largest marijuana policy organization, has been responsible for changing most state-level marijuana laws since 2000. For more information, visit http://www.MarijuanaPolicy.org.

Friday
Jan302015

MPP - Bill to Reduce Marijuana Penalties Introduced in N.H 

State Lawmakers to Consider Removing Criminal Penalties for Marijuana Possession in New Hampshire 

Bill introduced with bipartisan support would replace criminal penalties and potential jail time with a civil fine of up to $100 for possession of up to one ounce of marijuana

 

CONCORD — A bill has been introduced in the New Hampshire House of Representatives that would remove criminal penalties for possession of small amounts of marijuana. The House passed a nearly identical bill last year by a vote of 215-92, but the Senate refused to consider it. 

HB 618, sponsored by Rep. Adam Schroadter (R-Newmarket) and a bipartisan group of seven co-sponsors, would make possession of up to one ounce of marijuana punishable by a civil fine of up to $100. It would also make cultivation of up to six marijuana plants a Class A misdemeanor instead of a felony. Currently, possession of any amount of marijuana is a misdemeanor punishable by up to one year in prison and a fine of up to $2,000. New Hampshire is the only state in New England that treats simple marijuana possession as a criminal offense with the potential for jail time.  

"Criminalizing someone for possessing a small amount of marijuana causes far more harm than marijuana itself,” said Matt Simon, the Goffstown-based New England political director for the Marijuana Policy Project, which is supporting the bill. "A criminal record can prevent someone from accessing employment, an education, and even a home.” 

Three out of five adults in New Hampshire (61%) support removing criminal penalties for marijuana possession, according to a WMUR Granite State Poll released in April 2014. Only 24% said they were opposed. 

“Granite State voters are sick of having the harshest marijuana penalties in New England,” Simon said. “It is irrational to treat people like criminals simply for possessing a substance that is far less harmful than alcohol.” 

Nineteen states and the District of Columbia have removed the threat of jail for simple marijuana possession.