The Canadian government has taken its first legislative step toward fulfilling Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s campaign pledge to legalize marijuana.
Late Tuesday night, the government filed a notice of the introduction of “An Act respecting cannabis and to amend the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act, the Criminal Code and other Acts.”
The legislation is expected to be officially introduced on Thursday and will be detailed at a press conference that will be streamed live online.
The bill will be sponsored by Jody Wilson-Raybould, the nation’s minister of justice and attorney general.
Details of what the proposal would do haven’t been formally released, though media accounts indicate it will stick close to the recommendations that a government-appointed task force made late last year.
CBC reported that the legislation will allow people to possess up to 30 grams of marijuana and grow up to four cannabis plants at home. The legal age of use will be 18, but provinces and territories will be authorized to set higher age limits. Local governments will also be charged with setting the prices of marijuana and determining how it is distributed and sold.
Other remaining unanswered questions include how Canada will square its legalization of marijuana with its obligations under international drug control treaties that require signatories to prohibit cannabis and other drugs except for medical or scientific purposes.
Legalization advocates, cannabis business owners and elected officials from other parties have criticized Trudeau’s Liberal Party government for supporting a series of raids against unlicensed marijuana providers and taking the position that arrests should continue until prohibition officially ends.
It is unclear if two other government-sponsored bills listed on the new Parliament notice paper concern cannabis, though legalization advocates have speculated that one — “An Act to amend the Criminal Code (offences relating to conveyances) and to make consequential amendments to other Acts” — may have to do with penalties for driving under the influence of marijuana.