Apr 12, 2021 - Politics & Policy

New Mexico legalizes recreational marijuana for people over 21

a neon marijuana animated gif
Illustration: Lazaro Gamio/Axios

New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham (D) on Monday signed a bill that will legalize recreational marijuana for people over the age of 21.

The state of play: Lujan Grisham said in a statement following the state legislature's passage of the bill, "This is a significant victory for New Mexico. Workers will benefit from the opportunity to build careers in this new economy."

  • Commercial sales of cannabis in New Mexico will begin no later than April 2022, the Las Cruces Sun News reports.
  • Legalization is expected to generate $20 million in state revenue for New Mexico in 2023, per the Albuquerque Journal. Local governments are also expected to see $10 million in revenue.
  • The bill will also permit about 100 prisoners in the state with drug-related charges to have their convictions reconsidered, AP notes.

The big picture: New Mexico is now the seventh state since November to legalize marijuana use, per AP.

  • The efforts follow a national trend of lawmakers rethinking marijuana laws, especially when it comes to their disproportionate effect on communities of color.
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