Category Archives: News

The 86th Texas Legislature convenes today at 12pm!

Today in Austin, those elected to serve us in the Texas House and Senate will be sworn in with an oath of office. While Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick presides over the Senate, House members will elect one of their own to serve as Speaker of the House. Rep. Dennis Bonnen (R – Angelton) is presumed to be elected as he pledged votes from a super majority of incoming members.

The 86th Texas Legislature will convene today at 12pm!
You can watch the proceedings live: (House | Senate)

Marijuana policy is front and center of Texas politics thanks to the tremendous effort put forward by passionate advocates for reform. Our grassroots movement continues to gather momentum, putting us in an excellent position for success.

There’s a lot of work to do in exactly 140 days, so we need
all hands on deck!

We’ll keep you posted as bills make their way through the legislative process. Please keep an eye out for action alerts to help us advance policy proposals that further our shared cause.

Here are a few steps you an take today to join the team:

1) Donate toward our lobby efforts at the Capitol in support of sensible marijuana policies,

2) Take a couple minutes to identify your legislators and their voting records, and

3) Follow us on social media; use #TxMJPolicy when posting about Texas marijuana policy!

To learn more about the legislative process and how to get involved, join us this Saturday, January 12 from 2-5pm in Austin for an advocacy training event, including a testimonial workshop. It’s free and open to the public, so register now and share the event with your friends or colleagues.

Additional upcoming events include: Policy Briefing and Luncheon in Houston (Jan. 15) and TxMJPolicy LOBBY DAY in Austin (Feb. 7).

Thank you for supporting our work and making marijuana law reform a priority this legislative session!

 

Texas legislature convenes tomorrow! #TxMJPolicy

The legislature convenes tomorrow and we’ll have 140 days to make an impact on our state’s outdated marijuana policies!

Along with our allies, we’ve been able to make tremendous progressin a short period of time. From regional advocacy training events and non-stop statewide media coverage, to building strong bipartisan support and hosting the first-ever Texas Marijuana Policy Conference in Austin — our coalition is advancing the cause in the Lone Star State.

We have laid the ground work, now it’s time to bring it home!

There are already more than a dozen marijuana-related bills up for consideration, including:

* Reducing penalties for low-level possession
* Making the Compassionate Use Program inclusive
* Licensing hemp cultivation, regulating CBD products

To advance our priority policies, we lobby lawmakers directly, inform and empower grassroots activism, and ensure positive statewide media coverage. Our efforts bring the level of professionalism necessary to influence lawmakers and bring about meaningful policy changes.

Will you contribute toward our efforts?
Please click here to donate today.

Upcoming events include:

– Opening Day Meet & Greet at the Capitol  (Jan. 8)
– Advocacy Workshop in Austin (Jan. 12)
– Policy Briefing and Luncheon in Houston (Jan. 15)
– TxMJPolicy LOBBY DAY in Austin (Feb. 7)

Please consider making a contribution toward our lobbying effortsThank you for your support!

Now Available: Limited Edition Polo

In preparation for our big Texas Marijuana Policy Lobby Day and other professional advocacy events we have planned this year, we’re excited to offer our supporters a limited edition, custom embroidered polo shirt.

This specialty item is available for a limited time and offers our supports an opportunity to show support for reform…
and look good doing it!


Proceeds from sales will be put toward our lobby efforts and split evenly between Texas NORML and Texans for Responsible Marijuana Policy.  

This limited edition shirt is a moisture wicking, antimicrobial and UV   protection performance polo with flat knit collar and our specialty embroidered logo. The polo is platinum grey with a blue and red stitched logo. Select between fitted and straight cut styles.

Sales close on January 21st at midnight!

To secure your shirt, full payment is due at checkout. You can choose from two delivery options:

  1. Picked up at our Texas Marijuana Policy Lobby Day on Thursday, February 7th, 2019 by selecting the the “Pick Up at Lobby Day” option. Unclaimed shirts from Lobby Day will have to be shipped at an additional cost.
  2. Direct delivery. Your item(s) will be mailed out by February 11th, 2019.

Purchase your limited edition polo today!

Disclaimer: Because the item has not yet reached us, we can not guarantee the exact date your item will ship. Each pre-order item has an estimated shipping date but this is subject to change from the manufacturer without prior notice. If for any reason we are not able to fulfill your pre-order, we will refund the full purchase price immediately.

The Texas Legislature Convenes Soon — Are you prepared?

Texans for Responsible Marijuana Policy is a broad coalition of organizations, activists, and community leaders dedicated to realizing effective, efficient, and evidence-based marijuana policies in Texas.

In addition to lobbying lawmakers directly, we work to empower and mobilize grassroots advocacy. Since 2014, we’ve hosted many regional training events throughout the state, offering activists the tools they need to effectively advocate for reform.

This year, we’re teaming up with our coalition partners to host a
Texas Marijuana Policy Advocacy Workshop at the Capitol on Saturday, January 12!

Registration is free of charge, but seating is limited, so please reserve your seat now.

Constituent advocacy is one of the most critical tools we have as a grassroots movement. Legislators and other community members need to hear from Texans like you who want to see sensible marijuana policies instituted.

Texas Marijuana Policy Advocacy Workshop
Saturday, January 12, 2019
Texas Capitol, Room E2.002 (Maps)
2:00-5:00pm

In Texas, we cannot collect signatures to put reform on our ballot for voters to approve. Instead, we have to work through our state lawmakers to pass legislation. Beginning on January 8, we have 140 days to bring about meaningful reform. Lets make them count!

86th Legislature — Opening Day Meet & Greet

Join us at the Capitol on the first day of the 86th legislative session!

Opening day is one of ceremony and gratitude. It’s a great day to visit your legislator’s Capitol office and meet his/her staff. It’s not a day for lobbying, but certainly offers an opportunity to enrich your relationship with your legislators.

We will be serving complementary breakfast tacos and coffee (first come, first served) in the Capitol Grill, thanks to the generous support of Grav Labs. Additionally, we’ll be able to help you identify your legislators, their stance on reform, and the location of their offices.

Capitol Grill is located on level E1 in the Capitol Extension. Take the elevators down to E1 and follow signs to the grill. We’ve reserved a private space on the left side of the dining room.

Texas Capitol maps can be found here: https://tspb.texas.gov/plan/maps/maps.html

ADA Access: https://tspb.texas.gov/plan/access/access.html

PARKING IS GOING TO BE A CHALLENGE
It’s going to be a very busy day at the Capitol with many visitors. The visitors garage (https://tspb.texas.gov/plan/parking/parking.html) may be full, so plan on arriving early to find a nearby lot or street parking.

Email hfazio@txmjpolicy.org with questions or for more information.

We look forward to seeing you there to kick of the legislative session!

#TxLege Countdown — 5 days ’till session begins!

The 86th Texas Legislature convenes on Tuesday, January 8, marking the beginning of our 140-day opportunity to bring about meaningful reform!

More than a dozen bills have been introduced for consideration so far, with more expected to be filed before the March 8 filing deadline. Proposals range from reduced penalties for low-level marijuana possession and concentrated/infused products to full medical access for patients

We will be at the Capitol for opening day to be a part of the ceremony and visit with our legislative offices. If you’re in the Austin area and interested in joining us, find details here. Thanks go Grav Labs, we’ll be offering free breakfast and coffee (first come, first served).

Please consider making a contribution toward our efforts. Thank you for your support!

Other upcoming events include:

TxMJPolicy Advocacy Workshop in Austin (Jan. 12): http://www.texasmarijuanapolicy.org/advocacyworkshop/

TxMJPolicy Briefing and Luncheon in Houston (Jan. 15): http://www.texasmarijuanapolicy.org/houstonluncheon/

TxMJPolicy LOBBY DAY (Feb. 7): http://www.texasmarijuanapolicy.org/lobby-day/

Texas Marijuana Policy Briefing and Luncheon in Houston

Our Texas Legislature convenes on January 8 and advocates for marijuana law reform have more opportunity than ever before!
Join us for a private luncheon and policy briefing on currently proposed legislation, prospects for meaningful reform during the upcoming legislative session, and opportunities for advocacy at the Capitol or in your hometown.
Our policy briefing will be presented Heather Fazio, director of Texans for Responsible Marijuana Policy. Heather has worked as an advocate for marijuana law reform since 2012 and has since built a broad coalition of supporters working to reduce penalties for low-level marijuana possession and bring patients safe/legal access to medical cannabis.
We’ll also be joined by John Baucum, political director for Republicans Against Marijuana Prohibition. RAMP was founded in 2012 with a mission of helping to bring the Republican Party back to the ideals of freedom and justice, which were unfortunately set aside in support of prohibition.
Since its inception, RAMP has successfully brought the Republican Party of Texas on board reform through grassroots engagement and legislative action. The 2018 RPT Platform includes planks in support of both reduced penalties for possession and medical cannabis.
On-site parking available. ($5 for self-park, $15 for valet.)
Email hfazio@txmjpolicy.org with dietary preferences/restrictions or questions about the event.
Event sponsored by Republicans Against Marijuana Prohibition. Thank you, RAMP!

Texas Marijuana Policy Briefing and Luncheon

The Texas Legislature will convene in January and advocates for marijuana law reform have more opportunity than ever before!

Join us for a private luncheon and policy briefing on currently proposed legislation, prospects for meaningful reform during the upcoming legislative session, and opportunities for advocacy at the Capitol or in your hometown.

Tickets are $65 and seating is limited — secure your seat now! 

Admission includes lunch, a presentation on current and proposed marijuana policies in Texas, and discussion on advancing marijuana law reform in 2019.

Briefing will be presented by Heather Fazio, director of Texans for Responsible Marijuana Policy.

Free parking available in fenced lots on Calhoun Street between 14th and 15th Streets.

Email hfazio@txmjpolicy.org with dietary preferences or questions about the event.

Texas legislation seeks to more fairly assess penalties for cannabis concentrates and infused products

A bill introduced by Rep. Terry Canales addresses the unreasonable way charges are levied against those in possession of cannabis oil or infused products like lozenges or baked goods.

Currently, infused edible products carry significantly higher penalties than simple possession of marijuana. For example, a person caught with a batch of brownies made with marijuana would face an automatic felony charge. Worse, though, the person would be charged with the entire weight of the brownie, including the flour, chocolate, eggs, sugar, etc. A few years ago, a young man in Williamson County faced 99 years to life in state prison for a batch of marijuana brownies.

If enacted, HB 186 would only allow prosecution for the amount of marijuana in the product. It will still be a felony, but will be much more reasonably assessed.

“If we are going to continue to waste tax-payer dollars by incarcerating people for marijuana possession, we should not be charging people for the weight of the container which leads to an over-inflation of the weight of the substance and heavier criminal penalties,” says Rep. Terry Canales, an attorney and long-standing member of the House Criminal Jurisprudence Committee. “Current law allows law enforcement to over-zealously increase criminal penalties for Texans and we, the taxpayers, are paying for it.”

More information about the bill:

HB 186 (Rep. Terry Canales) — Relating to the determination of the weight of marihuana and other tetrahydrocannabinols for the purpose of the prosecution and punishment of the offense of possession of those substances.

Here you can find a fill list of all marijuana-related bills in Texas: http://www.texasmarijuanapolicy.org/2018/11/12/txmjpolicy-all-marijuana-related-bills-filed-in-texas/

TxMJPolicy Update: All marijuana-related bills filed in Texas

The 86th Texas Legislature will convene in January, but the pre-filing period began on Nov. 12. Lawmakers can now introduce legislation for consideration during the upcoming legislative session.

Several marijuana related bills have been introduced:

HB 63 (Rep. Joe Moody) — Relating to the civil and criminal penalties for possession of certain small amounts of marihuana and an exception to prosecution for possession of associated drug paraphernalia; creating a criminal offense.

SB 90 (Sen. Jose Menendez) — Relating to authorizing the possession, use, cultivation, distribution, transportation, and delivery of medical cannabis for medical use by qualifying patients with certain debilitating medical conditions and the licensing of dispensing organizations and testing facilities; authorizing fees.

HB 186 (Rep. Terry Canales) — Relating to the determination of the weight of marihuana and other tetrahydrocannabinols for the purpose of the prosecution and punishment of the offense of possession of those substances.

HB 122 (Rep. Gina Hinojosa) — Relating to the medical use of marihuana; providing an affirmative defense to prosecution for possession of marihuana.

HJR 21 (Rep. Ron Reynolds) — Proposing a constitutional amendment to authorize and regulate the possession, cultivation, and sale of cannabis for medical use.

HB 209 (Rep. Ron Reynolds) — Relating to authorizing the possession, use, cultivation, distribution, transportation, and delivery of medical cannabis for medical use by qualifying patients with certain debilitating medical conditions and the licensing of dispensing organizations and testing facilities; authorizing fees.

SB 116 (Sen. Jose Menendez) — Relating to industrial hemp; requiring an occupational license; authorizing fees.

SJR 7 (Sen. Jose Rodriguez) — Proposing a constitutional amendment to authorize and regulate the possession, cultivation, and sale of cannabis for medical use.

SJR 8 (Sen. Jose Rodriguez) — Proposing a constitutional amendment to authorize and regulate the possession, cultivation, and sale of cannabis.

SB 156 (Sen. Jose Rodriguez) — Relating to the civil and criminal penalties for possession of certain small amounts of marihuana and an exception to prosecution for possession of associated drug paraphernalia; creating a criminal offense.

HB 335 (Rep. Harold Dutton) — Relating to the penalties for possession of one ounce or less of marihuana and eligibility for placement on community supervision or on deferred adjudication community supervision for that offense.

HB 371 (Rep. Alma Allen) — Relating to the prosecution of and penalties for possession of one ounce or less of marihuana.

HB 551 (Rep. Terry Canales) — Relating to the prosecution of and criminal penalties for the possession of marihuana concentrate; creating criminal offenses.

HB 745 (Rep. Gene Wu) — Relating to the prosecution of and penalties for possession of 0.35 ounces or less of marihuana.

This list will be updated as marijuana-related bills are introduced.