Gov. Christie Says No to Legalizing Marijuana and Any Tax Revenue is “Blood Money”
Potential presidential hopeful, Chris Christie, called the tax revenue generated by other states through legal marijuana sales “blood money”. He continued by saying “..as long as I’m governor of New Jersey, there won’t be legalized marijuana in this state”. His comments were made while speaking at the Daytop addiction treatment center. James Curtain, CEO of the facility, indicated that marijuana is “secondary” compared to opiate and heroin abuse. Oxycotin, Oxycodone and other prescription pain medications are the primary source.
Several states, including Colorado, Washington, Massachusetts, Vermont, Connecticut and Maine have either legalized recreational marijuana use or have introduced bills to do so. The N.J. Municipal Prosecutors Association has endorsed full legalization of marijuana. Street corner dealers and drug cartels now thrive in an unregulated marketplace.
Each year New Jersey makes more than 21,000 arrests for marijuana possession. New Jersey Marijuana Possession of under 50 grams; N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10(a)(4) is a disorderly persons offense. Currently, this offense may not be plea bargained by the municipal prosecutor. The only option available is to fight the charge, apply for a conditional discharge or plead guilty. A person convicted of marijuana possession is subject to a fine of up to $1000 plus assessments to Drug Enforcement, laboratory analysis, Victims of Crime Compensation Board and to the Safe Neighborhood Services Fund of approximately $675. There is a mandatory loss of driver’s license anywhere from 6 months to 2 years and possible county jail up to six months