House Bill 420: NKY rep aims to legalize recreational marijuana Skip to content

House Bill 420: NKY rep aims to legalize recreational marijuana

And yes, the bill’s number is 420. (Click the link if you don’t know why that is relevant.)

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The medical marijuana program in Kentucky won’t go into effect until 2025, but there’s already a push to legalize recreational marijuana in the Commonwealth.

A bill introduced this week would make it legal to buy, sell and grow marijuana in Kentucky.

The bill’s title is only fitting also — House Bill 420.

“It sets a marketplace and a legalization of cannabis in the state for adult use. It sets the parameters and the regulation around that,” said Kentucky Rep. Rachel Roberts, who introduced the bill.

While recreational marijuana may not currently be legal in Kentucky, Roberts said it’s no secret that people are using cannabis.

“Make no mistake – people in Kentucky currently are using cannabis. They’re growing cannabis. They’re selling cannabis. It’s just not regulated for consumer safety or tax for the benefit of the general populace,” Roberts said.

So what’s the hold up?

“We still have a contingency in the general assembly. They will never vote for anything that they deem sinful, right? They’re always going to vote against alcohol bills and our other signature industry, of course, horse racing in the state. So, you know, that is one hurdle,” Roberts said.

But could recreational marijuana realistically become legal in Kentucky anytime soon?

Roberts believes the state gets a little closer to it each year.

“Last year we passed a medical cannabis law in Kentucky, which was a giant step forward for us,” she said.

The medical marijuana program is set to roll out next year.

Elizabeth Kirby, owner of Your CBD Store in Florence, says they’d like to apply for a license if it does become legal recreationally.

“[We’re] very interested in it, we talk about it a lot,” she said.

Kirby said she was excited when she found out about HB 420, saying that many of their customers ask about it constantly.

She also said she has many customers who want to use a stronger product that contains a trace amount of THC but can’t because of their jobs.

“So even though they may want to use a sleep gummy at night, they can’t do it because they may lose their job for being drug tested,” Kirby said.

HB 420 would prohibit employers from discriminating against employees who use cannabis outside of working hours if it doesn’t impact their job performance.

Roberts said her next step is to try to get more co-sponsors. Right now, the bill only has two.

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Written by Taylor Nimmo for WCPO. Cross-posted from Link NKY. Originally posted at WCPO



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