New Zealand Law Society - Government releases Cannabis Bill draft for referendum

Government releases Cannabis Bill draft for referendum

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The Exposure Draft for the referendum on the Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill has been released, the Minister of Justice has announced.

Two different referendums are intended to accompany this year’s General Election, which is due to take place on 19 September. A vote on the End of Life Choice Act is also due to be held.

The referendum question will ask people to choose whether they support the Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill.

The bill provides a regulatory framework to legalise and control the production, possession and use of cannabis in New Zealand for people aged 20 years and over.

The Exposure Draft also indicates the regulatory regime will aim to raise public awareness of the risks associated with cannabis consumption and reduce young people’s exposure to cannabis.

The referendum requires a simple 50.1% majority to be introduced to Parliament.

The minister, Andrew Little, says no further updates of the bill will be made before the referendum.

“It is important that all eligible voters have the opportunity to be informed about the upcoming referendums. The Government is committed to providing impartial, unbiased information on the referendums and its process,” Mr Little says.