Jim Kenney, the Mayor of Philadelphia, has recently come out in support of the idea that cannabis should be regulated like alcohol.
According to News Works, Kenney made an official statement on WHYY’s “Radio Times” show that cannabis should be sold in liquor stores across the state. “To me, we have the perfect system to set up the legal recreational use of cannabis through a controlled state store system, allowing the state to capture all the income that is going to the underground,” he stated on the air according to News Works.
Kenney feels that if sales are regulated in such a way on a statewide level, the integrity of cannabis sales would be maintained across Pennsylvania. “The hardest place to get served underage in Philadelphia when I was growing up was a Pennsylvania state liquor store,” he explained. “You could get a bartender to look the other way and sell you a six-pack when you are 19, but when you went into a state store, they wanted to see a license, your license. They didn’t care.” He also feels that revenue from selling cannabis legally across the state would help to direct money towards programs that need it badly, such as public education.
So far, medical cannabis is legal in Pennsylvania, but is not yet available for purchase. However, the state is slowly making progress, as it recently released the names of all medical cannabis cultivator applicants. The Governor has also expressed a desire to go slowly with legalization, and many Pennsylvanians are yet to be sold on the idea of recreational cannabis. Governor Tom Wolf has only spoken out in favor of decriminalization, and all actions so far have met with some legal resistance. With any luck, however, the state will keep steadily moving forward as long as politicians like Kenney continue to speak out.