Is Recreational Weed Legal in Pennsylvania? (Updated – 2024)

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Garry Stewart
Written By Garry Stewart

March 8, 2024


Pennsylvania is one of the few states in the Northeast that has not legalized recreational marijuana despite growing public support and pressure from neighboring states. While medical marijuana is legal, recreational users still face criminal penalties for possessing or consuming cannabis.

Possession of small amounts can result in fines or even incarceration, reflecting the state’s conservative stance on cannabis. Under the Pennsylvania recreational marijuana law in 2024 penalties are as follows:
Pennsylvania recreational marijuana law penalties in 2024 image table

However, some lawmakers and advocates are pushing for a change in the state’s marijuana policy and hope to introduce a bill on PA recreational weed in 2024 that would end the prohibition on adult-use cannabis.

Sens. Dan Laughlin said, “In my opinion, Pennsylvania legalized adult-use cannabis when they legalized the medical program in 2015. I think everybody knows it’s not difficult to get a medical card. Although it is a step that you would have to take, but can avoid adult-use cannabis.”

The Independent Fiscal Office estimates that recreational weed PA would generate anywhere from $400 million to upwards of $1 billion yearly in tax revenue.

In December 2018, during a Q&A session with constituents, Governor Wolf tweeted: “I think it is time for Pennsylvania to take a serious and honest look at legalizing recreational marijuana.”

One month later, Wolf announced a statewide tour by Lieutenant Governor John Fetterman to gather public input on the idea.

After the tour, the governor announced his support for legalizing recreational use for the first time. With the release of the positive tour report, they called for three actions to be taken by the state legislature.

  • Decriminalize possession of small amounts of cannabis.
  • Remove prior cannabis convictions.
  • Consideration of recreational use legalization.

The Recent Push!

Senate Bill 846 was introduced on July 6, 2023, The bill would create a Cannabis Regulatory Control Board that would take over the Department of Health. The board would handle permits and applications from weed dispensaries that want to sell in the state. The bill also states the legalization of recreational marijuana use for those 21 and older. They can possess:
  • 30 grams of cannabis flower.
  • No more than 1,000 milligrams of THC contained in cannabis-infused edible or nonedible products.
  • 5 grams of cannabis concentrate.
The bill also established an 8% sales tax on cannabis products. However, retailers would be required to pay an additional 5% excise tax on sales. Many believe the bill is an updated version of Senate Bill 473. A bill to legalize marijuana but which failed in the 2021-22 session. However, not all Democrats support PA recreational weed laws. Many of the democrats express reservations about the societal impacts and high addiction rates. Furthermore, They have different ideas about things like how much to tax marijuana, how to give out licenses to sell it, and how to make sure everyone has a fair chance to be part of the business.

What To Expect in 2024?

Democrats in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives may push for recreational marijuana legalization in 2024.

Pennsylvania Gov. Josh Shapiro (D), commenting on the legalization of marijuana, stated that ,officials in the state ‘don’t even have a choice anymore, given how quickly this movement is progressing across our region and the country.

A state representative, Rep. Dan Frankel, has plans to legalize and promote the recreational sale of marijuana in PA. The representative’s bill has yet to be formally introduced, but the memo was circulated last January. Recently, Rep. Dan Frankel held a hearing in the House Health Committee on cannabis and intends to hold additional hearings.

Early indications show that this bill is going to propose working through the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board to roll out this proposal, using state stores and existing medical cannabis dispensaries to sell high-potency THC marijuana products for recreational use.

In 2024, till Now the Only Way to Use Marijuana in PA is Medical Marijuana!

You can use marijuana for medical purposes with the help of a PA medical marijuana card. This card allows qualifying patients to access marijuana products from licensed dispensaries. The Pennsylvania Department of Health oversees the medical marijuana program.

My MMJ Doctor can help you to get your medical marijuana card in Pennsylvania. We have licensed healthcare professionals who possess expertise in recommending medical marijuana. With convenient telemedicine appointments and a streamlined certification process, we make it easy for patients to access the relief they deserve. Contact us today to schedule your evaluation.

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