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Law Enforcement Opposes Hawaii Cannabis Legalization

Law enforcement officials in Hawaii are standing in opposition to new cannabis legalization plans put forward by Attorney General Anne Lopez.

Lopez presented a new plan to legalize the sale and possession of adult use cannabis for people ages 21 and over by 1 January, 2026.

Setting out a roadmap for a retail adult use cannabis industry, the plan establishes taxes for adult use sales and a legal path for black market cultivators to transition into the legal market, as well as enhance law enforcement and improve health education programmes.

According to Hawaii News Now, Hawaii Prosecutor Steve Alm has voiced his opposition to the plan, stating that “law enforcement community was shocked” by Lopez’s support for legalization.

The publication reports that Alm believes that police, prosecutors, health experts, educators, and the visitor industry may all oppose the plan, with Alm stating that: “…there is no impetus to changing the system.”

Lopez’s plan has been modelled on programmes set up by States such as Massachusetts. It includes a social equity programme and the establishment of the Hawaii Cannabis Authority and seeks to amend or repeal existing laws relating to cannabis and hemp.

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