Rhode Island: New study commission on legalizing marijuana meets for first time

The 19 members of a new study commission to look into legalizing recreational marijuana in Rhode Island met for the first time Wednesday, setting up plans to take testimony and study data from other states over the next several months.

The commission was formed by the legislature earlier this year, tasking the members with studying the effects of legal marijuana and reporting back its findings. Its members include legislators, law enforcement officials, mental health and medical professionals and advocates from both sides of the debate.

At Wednesday’s meeting, the members elected Rep. Dennis Canario, D-Portsmouth, and Sen. Joshua Miller, D-Cranston, as co-chairs of the commission. Miller has introduced legislation to legalize recreational marijuana for the past seven years in a row, but says he will keep an open mind to whatever the commission recommends.

“I’ve been a legislator for 10 years, so I’ve learned how to become patient,” Miller said.


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