N.J. police chiefs want cops banned from using weed off duty
The call comes after legal weed sales began in the Garden State last month
By Police1 Staff
TRENTON, N.J. — Police chiefs are calling for the New Jersey State Legislature to ban cops from using legal cannabis.
According to Fox 5, the request comes from the New Jersey State Association of Chiefs of Police (NJSACOP), which represents over 500 active chiefs in the state.
"We formally have requested that our state Legislature carve out an exclusion for safety-sensitive employees – in particular, law enforcement officers," said John Zebrowski, a local chief who also serves as NJSACOP president.
The state rolled out recreational cannabis sales last month. Under the new laws, residents can buy up to an ounce of weed per sale for smoking, as well as purchase concentrates, edibles and other forms of marijuana with various limit restrictions, according to the New York Times.
Currently, the state allows cops and other first responders personal use while off duty. That’s what law enforcement leaders are looking to change. Some lawmakers have already introduced bills to alter the new rules, and the governor has expressed openness to alterations to the law that would enable police agencies to enforce their own restrictions on officers. But the state’s Senate president has pushed back against such exemptions.
"It can be metabolized over 28 days and that creates an awful lot of issues for us to manage," Zebrowski told Fox 5.
Meanwhile, police across the state are also grappling with enforcement issues tied to legalization laws, including a state Supreme Court case that could determine how officers measure impairment.