Greens hope to legalise cannabis nationwide with new bill, for industry expected to generate $28B
The decriminalisation of cannabis nationwide is one step closer as Greens senator David Shoebridge introduced a bill on Thursday which would allow adults to grow up to six plants at home.
The Greens have put forward their long-awaited legislation to decriminalise and regulate cannabis across Australia.
Senator David Shoebridge introduced the bill to the Senate on Thursday afternoon after wide consultation showing there was an appetite among Australians to legalise cannabis.
It hopes to establish a national cannabis licensing scheme and regulator which would oversee the commercial growing and selling of certain strains through licensed cafes and dispensaries.
Mr Shoebridge heralded it as a “historic” moment on social media, after years spent perfecting the bill and advocating for a legal cannabis market.
"Thanks to everyone who helped us make this the best possible bill we could present. It’s time to get this done," the Greens Senator said.
"Legal advice obtained by my office shows that the Greens can pass a bill to legalise cannabis nationally. All state legislation criminalising its legal use, possession and sale can be overridden. We could legalise cannabis across the country this year.”
The model proposed to legalise the drug with a single national market was strengthened by community consultation from more than 9000 survey responses.
The feedback was crucial to making improvements around labelling, storage, manufacturing, advertising and penalties.
Under the Party's "green gold" model, legalising cannabis would allow adults to grow up to six plants at home tax-free. A Parliamentary Budget Office (PBO) report commissioned by the Greens revealed in January that legalising cannabis for adults could generate $28 billion.
The PBO policy costing report revealed roughly 12 per cent of adult Australians consumed recreational cannabis on a regular basis – a figure that would rise to almost 14 per cent in the first year of its legalisation.
Being caught in possession of marijuana carries different penalties across Australia.
South Australia has the harshest laws with those caught with above “low level” possession facing fines of between $2000 to $200,000 and up to 25 years in jail.
Medical cannabis with a prescription has been legal in Australia since 2016 but is heavily regulated by Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA). Originally published here: https://www.skynews.com.au/australia-news/greens-hope-to-legalise-cannabis-nationwide-with-new-bill-for-industry-expected-to-generate-28-billion/news-story/d85c13cf796113732797420592f4b871