Republicans, who overwhelmingly opposed the bill when it initially went through the General Assembly, railed against the latest version.
“What we don’t want in Virginia is for people who think they’re doing the right thing to inadvertently break the law and get in trouble for it,” he said. “It’s incumbent on us as responsible adults now that cannabis is legal in Virginia to follow the rules. I’ve never been much of a rule follower, but a lot of us have been waiting for this for a long time, so we’re not going to mess it up.”
It will also be against the law for Virginians to order seeds from other states where marijuana is already legal.
It’s a question that should be clarified once the new law officially takes effect and the Virginia Cannabis Control Authority jumps into action on July 1.
“Prior to decriminalization taking effect in 2020, the Commonwealth was arresting upwards of 30,000 Virginians annually for marijuana possession,” NORML development director Jenn Michelle Pedini, who also serves as the executive director of the state chapter, Virginia NORML, said. “So while Virginians may be asking, ‘Where can get I cannabis legally,’ it’s unlikely Virginians are asking, ‘Where can I get cannabis?'”
An adult can legally share or gift a marijuana plant with another adult as long as no money is exchanged or trade occurred.
RICHMOND, Va. — When Virginia’s new marijuana laws go into effect on July 1, it will become legal for adults 21+ to carry up to an ounce of marijuana. It will also become legal to grow up to four marijuana plants (per household) in Virginia.
Christopher Haynie, who co-founded Richmond-based CBD, hemp, and home grow products store Happy Tree Agricultural Supply advised
Virginians thinking of navigating the new regulations to grow the plants at home to proceed with clarity and caution.
It will be years before legal retail sales is allowed in Virginia.
Here’s a breakdown of what will become legal and what will remain illegal:
WHAT’S STILL ILLEGAL:
__Many provisions of the bill dealing with the regulatory framework will have to be reapproved by lawmakers next year. The possession and cultivation provisions will not need a second vote.
That’s an area the Joint Legislative Audit and Review Commission (JLARC) has asked lawmakers to clarify in the future.
“Those dynamics have created essentially a vacuum. It will drive people who wish to possess marijuana to street level drug dealers,” Katz said.
Due to the federal prohibition on pot, Pedini said it’s illegal to have seeds mailed to you and to cross state lines after purchasing them elsewhere.
Anderson said four plants, if grown properly, can produce a years-worth of marijuana.
“People have to read the fine print”
“It’s very frustrating that we don’t have a direct legal path to acquiring seeds,” Ickes said. “That is going to lead people down the road of finding seeds that are not legal and there may not be a safe way to do that.”
Now, the law has changed and Netzel is among those hoping to grow at home as a cheaper alternative. Currently, she said she pays about $800 per month to use cannabis for her condition, not including the cost of periodically renewing her medical card recommendation.
“Right now, you can have three plants and be in compliance and also have 300 pounds of marijuana in your house and, under Virginia law, you’re solid,” Katz said.
“Everything you need…except the seeds”
While Virginians are allowed to possess up to an ounce of marijuana in public, Anderson said lawmakers set no clear limits on how much pot can be kept in a private residence.
While Virginians can legally grow outdoors if they follow state regulations, Anderson recommends growing indoors.