Australia Legalizes Cannabis In Its Capital.
by Dan Larkin.
In a historic move, Australia legalizes cannabis in its capital city, Canberra, and the surrounding territory. The ACT (Australian Capital Territory) voted it in on Wed., 9/25/19.
Here’s where you’ll find Canberra and the ACT if you’re not familiar. (It’s in the lower right, below Sydney.)
The ACT Legislative Assembly law(s) will legalize the possession, use, and cultivation of small amounts of cannabis in the ACT, where the city of Canberra is located. The new laws go into effect January, 31st of 2020.
This is the first Australian state or territory to legalize cannabis.
Here’s what the law legalizes.
- The ACT Legislative Assembly voted to permit adults over the age of 18 to possess of up to 50 grams of cannabis. (That’s just under 2 ounces.)
- Every household permitted to cultivate up to four cannabis plants.
- Cannabis will be banned from being used near children.
- The legislation also barring it from being grown in communal gardens.
Does this mean Australia legalizes cannabis anywhere?
Now, here’s something that will sound familiar to US citizens. The Commonwealth of Australia (that’s their federal government) says cannabis is federally illegal. So, what you have here is a territory stepping up first, much like Colorado did in the US.
But stepping up can come with some risks.
“Unfortunately (this law) cannot stop someone being arrested and charged if the Commonwealth officials were minded to do so, or prosecuted if the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions thought it were appropriate to do so,” he reportedly told lawmakers.”ACT Attorney General Gordon Ramsay in an ABC interview
Is this the tipping point for the “Land Down Under”? Time will tell, but it is an important first step by an Australian legislative body. Where this measure falls short, is in the lack of commercialization of cannabis.
So, you can grow some plants and own a couple of ounces but that’s it. There are no commercial dispensaries permitted, no commercial cultivation or production either.
We’ll keep an eye on Australia and see who steps up next.
Want to read more from CannabisIRL about cannabis legalization? Go here.