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New Jersey Lawmakers Witness Colorado’s ‘Sophisticated’ Cannabis Industry

A group of New Jersey lawmakers toured several Denver cannabis companies over three days to see what legalization looks like for themselves, according to a report from Philly.com.

Assemblyman Jim Kennedy said the operation had an unexpected “level of sophistication.”

“There’s been a lot of talk about legalization in New Jersey and I want to be informed on the successes and pitfalls of it,” Assemblywoman Maria Rodriguez said in the report. “I’m not necessarily against it but I’m here to learn more and be better informed.”

The group of four Democrats and two Republicans visited Medicine Man Technologies’ grow center during their tour, prompting “wow”s from members of the contingent as they saw a full-scale cannabis operation for the first time.

Republican State Sen. Kip Bateman compared the set up at the dispensaries to that of “jewelry stores where everything is kept behind glass cases.”

“As long as the right restrictions are in place it could work in New Jersey,” he said.

Last month, Republican Assemblyman Michael Carrol introduced legislation to regulate cannabis like tobacco — he was not present during the tour, however. State Sen. Nick Scutari was present, and has previously introduced legalization legislation which never garnered enough support to make it to the floor for a vote. He indicated he was planning on reintroducing the measure soon.

Even if lawmakers pass any of the bills, it is likely they would be vetoed by Gov. Chris Christie, who is an outspoken critic of legal marijuana.

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