🚨 Debate continues over whether police should be able to smoke weed

🚨 NJ rules allow the use of cannabis for cops when off-duty

🚨 Jersey City is suing to block those rules

Should cops be able to use marijuana when they are off duty?

Gov. Phil Murphy's administration says yes.

Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop says no. He has been battling New Jersey over this issue since the state legalized recreational cannabis use.

attachment-Steven Fullop, Mayor Jersey City, NJ

Fulop, who is also running for the Democratic gubernatorial nomination, is filing a lawsuit in federal court seeking to strike down New Jersey's rules for cannabis use among law enforcement officers.

On X (formerly Twitter) Fulop said the lawsuit will cite "the same federal law that Hunter Biden was indicted under with regards to firearms."

The suit, Fulop says, will seek to remedy "NJ’s insistence we violate federal laws with allowing Police Officers to use cannabis and possession of a firearm."

Under federal law, marijuana is still considered a controlled dangerous substance. Further under federal law, Fulop contends, officers who use cannabis would be prohibited from carrying a firearm.

"There is no way to confirm whether Cannabis was used an hour, a day, or week before a shift and it will take one questionable judgment call by a police officer that tests positive that will expose the city to massive liability," Fulop said.

Fulop has fired police officers for cannabis use

In August, the state Civil Service Commission ruled Jersey City cannot terminate a police officer for the use of cannabis products on personal time.

This all stems from a zero-tolerance policy Fulop implemented as recreational weed use became law in New Jersey in April of 2022.

Weed Workplace

The Cannabis Regulatory, Enforcement Assistance, and Marketplace Modernization Act (CREAMM) also states no "adverse action" may be taken "against any officers because they do or do not use cannabis off duty."

Fulop, however, maintains the New Jersey regulation is flawed and in defiance of federal law that lists marijuana as an illegal, controlled substance.

Fired police officers ordered to be reinstated

Despite the warnings from New Jersey Attorney General Matt Platkin, Fulop supported the firing of four Jersey City Police officers after they tested positive for cannabis. None were accused of being under the influence while on duty.

A judge has ordered at least two of those officers be reinstated with back pay.

The legislature has yet to act on cops and cannabis

Gov. Phil Murphy said he was open to the idea of a police ban on weed use.

Democratic state Sen. Paul Sarlo said he would introduce such a bill.

attachment-Nicholas Scutari

However, Senate President Nick Scutari, D-Union, immediately shot down the idea. Scutari was the prime sponsor of the bill to legalize recreational marijuana use.

"You open up this box where you start regulating people’s behavior when they’re on their own time — I think that’s a very dangerous, slippery slope, that I’m not willing to go down," Scutari said at the time.

UPDATE 2023: All the NJ stores that sell legal weed

The number of recreational cannabis dispensaries continues to grow, since the first NJ adult use marijuana sales in April 2022.

Gallery Credit: Erin Vogt, Eric Scott

NJ bears prep for winter: Here's what attracts them to your yard

Black bears are on the move in New Jersey and all 21 counties need to be ready.

Gallery Credit: Mike Brant

30 'poorest' neighborhoods in NJ

These ZIP codes in New Jersey have the highest percentage of households earning less than $25,000 in annual median income. The figures are based on 5-year data by the U.S. Census American Community Survey as of 2021.

Gallery Credit: New Jersey 101.5

More From New Jersey 101.5 FM