By Guy Page
Bills passed by the Vermont Senate in the last two days would:
- Remove any cap on the concentration of THC in products sold at licensed marijuana stores. THC is the psychoactive ingredient in cannabis.
- Reclassify the felony category (and therefore severity of sentencing) for drug possession and trafficking. Among other changes, it removes jail time as a sentencing option for simple possession of heroin.
- Create an advisory State Youth Council with 28 members ages 11-18, all of whom must demonstrate a commitment to “inclusion.” Committees within the Council will tackle climate change, equity and racism, and mental health. The Council can meet up to 16 times a year, and will be paid per diem.
- Create a Child Tax Credit of up to $1000 per child for families with joint incomes of $200,000 or less.
- Allow ‘ranked choice’ or runoff voting in Burlington, via charter change.
Some of these bills were passed by the House and then amended by the Senate. The two chambers must agree on the final language of the bills before they can be sent to Gov. Phil Scott for his signature. The following is a list of all Senate bills passed since Tuesday, April 26:
|H.515||4/27/2022||banking, insurance, and securities|
|H.505||4/27/2022||reclassification of penalties for unlawfully possessing, dispensing, and selling a regulated drug|
|H.462||4/27/2022||miscellaneous Department of Health programs|
|H.293||4/27/2022||creating the State Youth Council|
|H.266||4/27/2022||health insurance coverage for hearing aids|
|H.655||4/27/2022||telehealth licensure and registration and to provisional licensure for professions regulated by the Office of Professional Regulation|
|H.741||4/27/2022||approval of amendments to the charter of the City of St. Albans|
|H.744||4/27/2022||approval of an amendment to the charter of the City of Burlington|
|H.711||4/26/2022||the creation of the Opioid Settlement Advisory Committee and the Opioid Abatement Special Fund|
|H.548||4/26/2022||miscellaneous cannabis establishment procedures|
|H.510||4/26/2022||a Vermont Child Tax Credit and the Vermont Social Security income exclusion|