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The KUNM news team's coverage of the 2020 legislative session and its impacts

Governor Urges Chamber Of Commerce To Support Recreational Marijuana In N.M.

Hannah Colton / KUNM
Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham speaking to the Greater Albuquerque Chamber of Commerce on Thursday, Jan. 16.

Recreational marijuana is legal in 11 states. Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham, who released her priorities this week for the upcoming legislative session, is pushing for New Mexico to be next.

Filed Thursday, Jan. 16, Senate Bill 115 would legalize recreational marijuana in New Mexico, which the governor says could create 11,000 new jobs in the first year. 

Last year, a similar bill stalled in the Senate Finance Committee. One of that bill’s opponents was The Greater Albuquerque Chamber of Commerce, which had concerns about marijuana use at work and driving under the influence.

Lujan Grisham spoke at a luncheon hosted by the chamber Thursday.

“I’m sure there are folks who have trepidation about cannabis. That’s fair,” she said.

She urged those in attendance to support this year’s version of the bill in part by highlighting what’s changed. “I feel really good about how we resolved so many of the issues," Lujan Grisham said. "Taxing it right, training, making really incredible tough regulatory standards. You know, in states like Colorado actually, DWI went down."

The total number of DUIs in Colorado went down 15 percent, but the number of times they included marijuana did go up slightly, according to the state’s Department of Public Safety

The 30-day 2020 legislative session begins Tuesday. 


This story is part of the project Your N.M. Government. Funding for our legislative coverage is provided, in part, by the Thornburg Foundation, the New Mexico Local News Fund and KUNM listeners like you.

Nash Jones (they/them) is a general assignment reporter in the KUNM newsroom and the local host of NPR's All Things Considered (weekdays on KUNM, 5-7 p.m. MT). You can reach them at nashjones@kunm.org or on Twitter @nashjonesradio.
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