Wilmington-based AAA Mid-Atlantic was quick to announce fierce opposition to a newly introduced bill that would legalize recreational use of a small amount of marijuana.
“AAA strongly advocates for the safety of drivers, passengers, and pedestrians by opposing House Bill 110,” stated Cathy Rossi, vice presidentof Public and Government Affairs for AAA Mid-Atlantic.“We have more data now than we did two years ago showing that crashes related to marijuana use increase after a state legalizes recreational marijuana. More drivers will drive high, not fully knowing the risks of using marijuana before getting behind the wheel. This puts everyone on the road at greater risk.”
The 45-page bill would require a three-fifths vote for passage. Gaining that many votes would be difficult, even with Democrats in the majority.
AAA cited reports indicating that marijuana has become a factor in traffic and pedestrian deaths in states where legalization took place.
Also mentioned are lower-than-expected revenue from taxes on marijuana and a lack of an immediate sobriety test related to marijuana use.
Supporters of legalization have claimed the figures don’t take into consideration the extended amount of time THC from marijuana remains in the body.
Most marijuana legalization efforts have been the result of voter referendums, with most legislative efforts falling short. Delaware does not allow direct votes.
Legalization efforts stalled in New Jersey, with legislators now suggesting a direct vote.
Delaware was an early adopter of medcal marijuana, but was slow to expand a growing and dispensary system, due to questions about federal laws that still ban all uses of marijuana.