While other states pursue cannabis legalization, Wisconsin lawmakers are moving backwards to a State Assembly vote on a bill that already passed the State Senate on a 24-9 vote Sept. 17, 2013, that would create new penalties for pot possession.
Senate Bill 150, relating to: local ordinances regarding possession of marijuana or a synthetic cannabinoid, has been placed on the Assembly calendar for Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2014 by the Assembly Rules Committee. The lead sponsors are two freshman Fox Valley lawmakers, Sen. Rick Gudex (R- Fond du Lac) and Rep. Jeremy Thiesfeldt (R-Fond du Lac).
Previously, SB150's Assembly version, AB 164 received a hearing in the Assembly Committee on Urban and Local Affairs on May 21, 2013 and then passed out of committee on June 4 with majority Republicans voting in favor on a party line 5-3 vote with one absent.
After a hearing, the bill then passed by a 4-1 margin in the Senate Economic Development and Local Government committee where Democrat Senator Julie Lassa (D-Stevens Point) joined with her GOP colleagues.
Representatives of state cannabis law reform groups testified against the bill at both hearings.