NJ; The Old Ways Die Hard: “Howell Police Chief Andrew Kudrick wants the public to know marijuana is still prohibited and will be enforced.”

New Jersey News Network reports. “It’s still illegal,” Chief Kudrick said. “Marijuana is still illegal in New Jersey. Even though it’s passed, the recreational use has been passed by voters. It’s still illegal.

“There is no law drafted up. I know they are trying to figure out what will be inside that law. It’s confusing. You ask voters on a law that doesn’t exist right now.”

On the other hand, Chief Kudrick was in favor of the use of medicinal marijuana, especially when the Honig family of Howell pushed for the legislation of medical cannabis for their 7-year-old boy who died of cancer.

However, the chief is concerned recreational use will be a disaster for the community.

“It’s going to become a problem for us and a problem with our community,” Kudrick said. “Even though it overwhelmingly passed; it’s something we have to recognize it’s accepted by the community. I don’t think they understand the consequences.”

Unlike with alcohol, where you have a breathalyzer that would be able to determine when somebody is under the influence, marijuana lacks an impairment detector.

Howell Township recently dealt with the opioid crisis that shook the town. The last thing Chief Kudrick wants for Howell is a setback.

“Howell was in the top 15 in the state’s opioid affected municipalities,” Chief Kudrick said. “We got hit hard here. We were preparing for it but didn’t yet realized we would be hit that hard. We’re not urban community. We over came that through recovery efforts, but we know that everyone that had an opioid problem first started with marijuana.”

The main concern of Kudrick will be training officers to detect marijuana use especially on the roadways.

“You’ll see people on both sides that have stats to prove their point,” Chief Kudrick said. “But when you look at the hard data from Colorado, the number of traffic fatalities because of marijuana has increased dramatically.

“We usually lead the county in the state with detection of impaired drivers. So, we knew right from the beginning we needed to enhance training.”

If there was ever a time to legalize marijuana, Chief Kudrick thinks this is the worst time to do it.

“Think about it,” Chief Kudrick said. “They are passing this at the worst possible time. They’re expediting it. They’re shoving it down voters throats. Now is not the time.

“We’re in the middle of a pandemic, and we just got through a huge opioid crisis in the state. Now, they’re presenting the community to legalize marijuana.”

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