November 8 2016. Five states — Arizona, California, Maine, Massachusetts and Nevada — considered legalizing the recreational use of cannabis. Three others — Florida, Arkansas and North Dakota — decided whether to permit cannabis for medical purposes. Montana weighed whether to ease restrictions on an existing medical cannabis law.

California, Maine, Massachusetts and Nevada legalized cannabis for recreational use after November 8 voting and can open their shops in 2018. Florida, Arkansas, North Dakota and Montana voters have approved cannabis for medical use.


Arizona (rejected), California (approved), Maine (approved), Massachusetts (approved), Nevada (approved), Florida (approved), Arkansas (approved), North Dakota (approved), Montana (approved).

Thirty states and the District of Columbia currently have laws legalizing cannabis in some form.

Nine states and the District of Columbia have adopted the most expansive laws legalizing marijuana for recreational use. In Alaska, adults 21 and older can now transport, buy or possess up to an ounce of marijuana and six plants. Oregon voters approved a similar measure allowing adults to posses up to an ounce of marijuana in public and 8 ounces in their homes, set to take effect July 1. Colorado and Washington previously passed similar ballot measures legalizing marijuana in 2012.

Most recently, Louisiana lawmakers amended the state’s existing medical marijuana law, permitting doctors to recommend rather than prescribe medical marijuana, which runs counter to federal law. The law also expanded the list of eligible conditions for cannabis treatment.

19 April 2017 the West Virginia Medical Cannabis Act, S.B. 386, was signed by Gov. Jim Justice. Beginning no sooner than July 2019, qualifying patients whose doctors have issued them a written certification for medical cannabis will be allowed to register with the health department to use medical cannabis and to buy it from regulated dispensaries.

On January 22, 2018, Vermont became the first state to legalize recreational cannabis through its legislature. The law will take effect in July 2018.

Oklahoma voters approved on June 26, 2018 a ballot measure making the state the 30th in the U.S. to legalize medical cannabis.

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