Wyoming’s two chances of legalizing cannabis this legislative session just missed the deadline and died before they could see the light of day during the recent General Session, to the disappointment of many.
House Bill 209, which was a recreational and medical cannabis bill rolled into one, and House Bill 82, which would have just legalized medical cannabis, are now both destined not to become reality this session. Both bills passed in the House, but missed the deadline for further consideration.
Both bills made it out of committee, and then the next step would have been a debate in front of the House of Representatives. However, this was not to be. The House failed to take either up for consideration before the deadline for this session, which was Monday of this week. Now, they will not be going before the Committee of the Whole, a mandatory step needed to advance them out of the House.
This is frustrating for many who felt that it was time for legal cannabis in Wyoming. A recent study from the University of Wyoming Survey & Analysis Center revealed that 54 percent of those who live in the state support adult-use cannabis and legal possession for personal use, and 85 percent of respondents supported medical use. In addition, 75 percent support decriminalizing cannabis.
On March 12, Chair Jared Olsen argued before the House Judiciary Committee that Wyoming should legalize cannabis in order to stay up-to-date with the changes and wave of cannabis acceptance happening across the globe. He felt that if the House did not act, Wyoming would legalize through a ballot measure, or the country would legalize and catch the state by surprise.
“Is Wyoming ready to legalize marijuana?” she asked. “From my perspective, it is only a matter of time before one of a few things happen.”