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Lamont Pledges To Sign Marijuana Law

Governor Ned Lamont at the Mystic Aquarium in Norwalk on June 18, 2021.
Ebong Udoma
WSHU Public Radio
Governor Ned Lamont at the Mystic Aquarium in Norwalk on Friday.

Governor Ned Lamont said he will sign the law that legalizes the adult recreational use of pot in Connecticut next week.

Lamont said the new law would align Connecticut with neighboring states that have already legalized pot. He said it goes further and includes social equity provisions to aid communities affected by the war on drugs.

“I think 50% of the licenses are designated for those communities. And most of the resources are going back to those communities as well. I want this broadly based. And some of our poorer towns as well as our cities where people are going to be able to take advantage of this,” Lamont said.

Priority would be given to impoverished census tracts with high unemployment.

Lamont said he expects state income from marijuana sales to be up to $4 million the first year and build to more than $100 million a year in future.

Lamont said he wants to reassure parents that the state’s legalization of pot would be handled responsibly.

“I want moms and dads to know we are doing this in a safe regulated way. And by the way getting rid of all that advertising and billboard stuff, a lot of which is seen by kids. This is for adult-use only,” Lamont said.

The new law would allow adults 21 and older to use recreational pot beginning July 1. Retail sales would begin by May next year.

As WSHU Public Radio’s award-winning senior political reporter, Ebong Udoma draws on his extensive tenure to delve deep into state politics during a major election year.