NORML gets down to brass tacks on the laws, penalties for cannabis

NORML gets down to brass tacks on the laws, penalties for cannabis
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The voters passed Prop 207, a statewide ballot initiative legalizing the possession, use and commercial sale of marijuana for adults. However, a dedicated marijuana user should know the laws and penalties for buying, selling and manufacturing or cultivating weed in Arizona.

Arizona NORML’s goal is stated in its name: reform marijuana laws by any legitimate means available. The staff says they believe their work is necessary.

They advocate at the Capitol. They help craft legislation, inform the public through the media, through public meetings around the state, and through their own web presence and social media.

They work for the patients and the industry, defendants and entrepreneurs; for the canna-curious and the seasoned veterans. Arizona NORML aims to make marijuana in Arizona in every imaginable way, every single day. They work to educate, activate, and organize cannabis issues large and small according to their resources, the AZ NORML mission statement reported.

All good stoners should be aware of these Arizona laws and penalties.

Possession: Adults (age 21 or older) may possess 1 ounce of recreational cannabis with no penalty or fines. If someone has more than 1 ounce up to 2.5 ounces, it is considered a petty offense, with no incarceration but you will incur a max fine of $300. If you exceed the 2.5 ounces to less than 2 pounds, the penalty is a felony, with up to six months to one and a half years behind bars, and a max fine of $150,000. It gets much worse. If you possess 2 pounds to less than 4 pounds, and 4 pounds or more, you will be charged with a felony, you could get nine months to two years of incarceration and a max fine of $150,000, and one and a half years to three years with a $150,000 max fine, respectively.

Sale: The transfer of up to 1 ounce of adult-use cannabis is legal. If someone sells less than 2 pounds of cannabis, that will get them a felony with one and a half years to three years of incarceration and a max fine of $150,000. With the sale of 2 to 4 pounds you will be charged with a felony, that holds you to two to seven years in the slammer with up to a $150,000 fine, and if you sell more than 4 pounds you can get four years to 10 years for a felony with the $150,000 max fine.

Manufacturing/cultivation: If you are looking to grow your own weed, keep in mind that you may cultivate up to six plants for noncommercial purposes in a private residence. This law took effect on Nov. 30, 2020. If you grow more than six plants, you can be charged with a felony that gets you nine months to seven years of incarceration and a $150,000 max fine. “An adult may transfer up to six plants to another adult as long as there is no remuneration, and the transfer is not advertised or promoted to the public.” NORML said on its website. Remuneration means money paid for work or a service.

Trafficking: If you bring less than 2 pounds of marijuana to Arizona, you will be charged with a Class 3 felony and face two and a half to seven years of incarceration and pay up to the max fine of $150,000. If you bring in 2 pounds or more, you will be charged with a Class 2 felony and may sit in jail for a minimum of four to a maximum of 10 years, with the $150,000 max fine.

Hash and Concentrates: You can possess less than 5 grams of hash or concentrates with no penalties or jail time. If you have 5 grams to 12.5 grams it is considered a petty offense with no time behind bars, but you could pay a maximum fine of $300. If you possess 12.5 grams or more, you will be charged with a felony that could carry one to 3.75 years behind bars and up to a $150,000 fine. Manufacture, sale or trafficking of hash or concentrates get you a felony with three to 12.5 years in the big house, and you could pay up to $150,000 in fines for the offense.

Paraphernalia: Remember that roach clip hanging on your rearview mirror, or the little marble pipe your brother bought you, which you kept in the car? Well, a cop pulling you over for a harmless traffic violation could see your paraphernalia in the car and this could land you in hot water. Well, not anymore in Arizona. Possession or use of paraphernalia is legal. No penalty or incarceration or fine. The passing of Prop 207 legalizes the possession, use, manufacturing and sale of paraphernalia.

Miscellaneous: Employing a minor in the commission of a drug offense, being convicted of a prior felony, or committing a drug offense in a school zone has led to an increased sentence, NORML noted.

Go to norml.org for more information on laws and penalties.

The national NORML mission statement “is to move public opinion sufficiently to legalize the responsible use of marijuana by adults, and to serve as an advocate for consumers to assure they have access to high quality marijuana that is safe, convenient and affordable.”

See arizonanorml.org/mission/ for more information on NORML’s mission.