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Adult-use Cannabis Is Now Legal in New Mexico: Gov. Signs Legalization, Expungement Bills

The new bill allows New Mexicans 21+ to possess up to two ounces of cannabis, and cultivate six mature and six immature plants at home.

This story originally appeared on Benzinga

On Monday, New Mexico became the latest state to legalize adult-use cannabis, after Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham signed the Cannabis Regulation Act. Sales are expected to begin before April 2022.

Following a legalization wave led by New York and Virginia, this approval now puts more than 43 percent of Americans living in legal cannabis jurisdictions, according to The Marijuana Policy Project.

RELATED: Will New Mexico Be The Next To Legalize?

"The successful bill signing today of adult-use cannabis legislation in New Mexico would not have been possible without the leadership of Governor Lujan Grisham and the tireless support of the State Legislature," said David Culver, vice president of global government relations at Canopy Growth.

The Bills

Signed bill HB2 allows New Mexicans 21 and over to possess up to two ounces of cannabis, and cultivate six mature and six immature plants at home. The bill also regulates the production and sale of recreational cannabis while including measures to incentivize populations disproportionately impacted by prohibition to enter the industry.

"We are going to increase consumer safety by creating a bona fide industry. We're going to start righting past wrongs of this country's failed war on drugs. And we're going to break new ground in an industry that may well transform New Mexico's economic future for the better," said Gov. Grisham, a strong proponent of cannabis reform.

RELATED: More States Have Made Marijuana Legal, So Why Are More People Getting Arrested?

Senate Bill 2, a complementary bill signed in the same session, provides automatic expungement opportunities for individuals charged with low-level cannabis convictions.

"Today's signing — coupled with last month's signing into law of New York's Marijuana Regulation and Taxation Act and news that Virginia has legalized three years ahead of schedule — shows state-level policymakers are listening to their constituents and embracing the promise of a safe and well-regulated cannabis market," concluded Canopy's Culver.