Judiciary Committee narrowly passes legalizing marijuana

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NORWALK -

Legalized marijuana is one step closer to becoming a reality after it cleared a key hurdle at the state Capitol.

The Judiciary Committee narrowly gave it the green light Monday.

"Marijuana is in every single community -- white, black, brown," says state Sen. Dennis Bradley.

The plans would create a new Cannabis Control Commission, a possession limit of 1.5 ounces, which is equal to about 40 joints, and a ban on marijuana in bars and restaurants. Towns and cities could potentially ban sales as well.

"I'd like to see strict regulations on THC levels in cannabis," says state Sen. Will Haskell. "I'd also like to see greater regulation in terms of what form marijuana can take in Connecticut."

Luis Vega was arrested a few years ago for having a joint in his vehicle.

"It follows you for a very long time," Vega says. "If I was looking to go back to school and further my education, I would not be qualified for any federal funding for that one joint."

For Vega, legalization might mean he could apply to wipe his criminal record clean.

MORE: Marijuana legalization vote set for Monday

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