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The original legislation, S-3454, inexplicably bans police officers from notifying parents whose kids commit a first-time offense of marijuana or alcohol use or possession.
After significant public backlash, all indications signal Trenton will enact a “clean-up” bill to allow officers to notify parents when their children are caught using or possessing marijuana or alcohol.
Mayor Soriano demanded that the law restore parental notification rights so that parents have the opportunity to address the behavior, and influence decision-making by their children in a positive way.
“Parents need to be involved in our community’s public safety process,” said Mayor Soriano. “I do not support removing the parents’ right to know. As a parent myself we should be given the opportunity to correct the behavior and keep our kids safe. I am in support of legislation to restore parental notification of first underage marijuana and alcohol offenses.”
Adult use is supported by the state’s two most powerful lawmakers and, three months ago, 67 percent of the state’s voters backed a constitutional amendment saying New Jerseyans aged 21 and over should be allowed to sell and use cannabis.
Even so, New Jersey’s three-year odyssey toward a regulated cannabis market nearly ran aground over disagreements between Murphy, top Democrats and leaders of the Black and Latino legislative caucuses over how to penalize kids who have been caught with a loose joint.