California To Vote On Legalizing Recreational Marijuana

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    California’s secretary of state announced Tuesday that the measure had obtained enough signatures to be placed on the ballot. Its supporters have raised $3.53 million, The Sacramento Bee reports ā€” nearly 31 times more than what opponents have raised.

    The initiative would allow adults age 21 and older to possess, transport and purchase up to an ounce of marijuana and grow up to six plants for recreational use.

    “Today marks a fresh start for California, as we prepare to replace the costly, harmful and ineffective system of prohibition with a safe, legal and responsible adult-use marijuana system that gets it right and completely pays for itself,” Jason Kinney, spokesman for the Adult Use of Marijuana Act, said in a statement.

    Should the initiative be approved by voters, the reduced costs to local and state governments for enforcing marijuana-related laws could exceed $100 million annually, according to the statement from the secretary of state. Likewise, annual state and local tax revenues from the production and sale of marijuana could reach more than $1 billion ā€” which would primarily “be required to be spent for specific purposes such as substance use disorder education, prevention and treatment.”

    Supporters of the initiative include the California Democratic Party, California Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom, the California NAACP and the ACLU of California. Former Facebook President Sean Parker has provided “major financial backing,” according to the Bee.

    Recent polls show that Californians support marijuana legalization. According to a poll conducted last month by the Public Policy Institute of California, “a majority (60%) of likely voters say that, in general, marijuana use should be legal, and 37 percent say it should not be legal.”

    http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2016/06/29/483999326/california-to-vote-on-legalizing-recreational-marijuana

    Once CA legalizes, this will move the needle at the national level.

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