Gov. Ralph DLG Torres has concerns about the use of cannabis in the Commonwealth that he wants to first take up with the Legislature, including a possible impact on the crime rate.
In a news briefing last Wednesday, Torres said he has already reviewed Sen. Sixto Igisomar’s (R-Saipan) Senate Bill 20-62, which proposes to allow the use of cannabis for recreational and medicinal purposes.
“…I have some inputs I would like to discuss with the members [of the Legislature],” he said, insisting that he respects the decision of the Senate.
Torres said he wants to know if there is a correlation between the passage of the marijuana bill in the 29 U.S. states that have legalized cannabis and any increase in crime.
“These are some of the things that we should really look into and not just the economic side of the bill,” he said, reiterating that he is more concerned with the crime rates before and after the passage of the cannabis legalization bill.
The House Judicial and Governmental Operations Committee led by Rep. Ivan A. Blanco (R-Saipan) held a public hearing on the bill last Tuesday evening at the Pedro P. Tenorio Multi-Purpose Buildinig in Susupe.
The JGO, in a meeting prior to the public hearing, supported the passage of S.B. 20-62. The bill is now up for discussion on the House floor.