Pot-Legalization-Headed-for-2010-Ballot-

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Twitch
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Pot-Legalization-Headed-for-2010-Ballot-

Post by Twitch »

http://www.nbcbayarea.com/news/po...ded ... 04947.html


AP A measure to legalize marijuana in California has enough signatures to qualify for the November 2010 ballot, advocates say.

The Tax and Regulate Initiative has far more than the nearly 434,000 signatures needed to make the statewide ballot, said Richard Lee, well-known Oakland medical marijuana entrepreneur and the initiative's main backer. Campaign organizers say they will submit more than 650,000 signatures of registered voters next month.

"People were eager to sign," Lee told the Chronicle. "We heard they were ripping the petitions out of people's hands to do it.

"We'll keep our organizers on the street to keep the momentum going strong, but today we're declaring an overwhelming victory."

The proposal would legalize possession of up to one ounce of marijuana for adults 21 and older. Residents could cultivate marijuana gardens up to 25 square feet. City and county governments would determine whether to permit and tax marijuana sales within their boundaries.

County election officials across the state now must validate and count the signatures before the California Secretary of State puts the measure on the ballot .

Lee's group has collected more than 680,000 signatures, about 57% more than the number needed. That should be plenty -- as a rule of thumb, about 30% of signatures on petitions can be expected to be invalidated, according to Steve Smith, a political consultant who has run many California initiative campaigns.

"I'd be very surprised if they don't qualify," Smith told the Los Angeles Times.

A Field Poll conducted in April found that 56 percent of California residents supported legalizing and taxing marijuana to help bridge the state budget deficit. Still, pro-legalization advocates are divided over whether the ballot measure is being pushed too soon.

Marijuana is illegal under federal law. But some legal scholars have argued the U.S. government could do little to make California enforce the federal ban if the drug became legal under state law.

Oakland is ground zero for marijuana legalization in the U.S. It became the first city in the country to pass a cannabis tax during a special election in July. The city is expected generate nearly $300,000 a year from taxes on medical cannabis clubs. Other California cities considering taxing medical marijuana are San Jose, Berkeley, Santa Cruz, Sacramento and Los Angeles.

Lee owns a hanful of Oakland businesses, including Coffeeshop Blue Sky and the famed Oaksterdam University, where students can enroll in classes for "entering the budding cannabis job field." Lee's company has spent $1.1 million on the effort already, and expects a full campaign to cost between $7 million and $20 million.

"Medical marijuana in California has been accepted as legalization in some ways by a lot of the population," Lee told the Times. "To me this is codifying what is happening


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sh@dy
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Post by sh@dy »

sounds too good to be true :D
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Puffin13
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Post by Puffin13 »

Go Cali! Go Cali! :D If this ballot measure passes next year it could have major positive implications for the rest of the USA and possibly other countries of the world. Go Cali!
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echc1
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Post by echc1 »

go for it cali.....it'd be even better if they beat 1 million signatures ,still ,just to win that vote would be nice...good luck cali
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sonicblue
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Post by sonicblue »

You know how I'm going to vote.

I hope it passes and sends a message to governments around the globe.

I'm sure I don't have to ask but wish us luck!
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spidergawd
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Post by spidergawd »

I wish you luck. You know we always follow you Yanks. :), and if you get this through I won't complain about that.
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Stanky Danky
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Post by Stanky Danky »

OLYMPIA, Washington - Washington is one of four states where measures to legalize and regulate marijuana have been introduced, and about two dozen other states are considering bills ranging from medical marijuana to decriminalizing possession of small amounts of the herb.

"In terms of state legislatures, this is far and away the most active year that we've ever seen," said Ethan Nadelmann, executive director of the New York-based Drug Policy Alliance, which supports reforming marijuana laws.

Nadelmann said that while legalization efforts are not likely to get much traction in state capitals anytime soon, the fact that there is such an increase of activity "is elevating the level of public discourse on this issue and legitimizing it."

"I would say that we are close to the tipping point," he said. "At this point they are still seen as symbolic bills to get the conversation going, but at least the conversation can be a serious one."

Opponents of relaxing marijuana laws aren't happy with any conversation on the topic, other than keeping the drug illegal.

"There's no upside to it in any manner other than for those people who want to smoke pot," said Travis Kuykendall, head of the West Texas High Intensity Drug-Trafficking Area office in El Paso, Texas. "There's nothing for society in it, there's nothing good for the country in it, there's nothing for the good of the economy in it."

Legalization bills were introduced in California and Massachusetts earlier this year, and this month, New Hampshire and Washington state prefiled bills in advance of their legislative sessions that begin in January. Marijuana is illegal under federal law, but guidelines have been loosened on federal prosecution of medical marijuana under the Obama administration.

Even so, marijuana reform legislation remains a tough sell in some places. In the South, for example, only Mississippi and North Carolina have decriminalization laws on the books.

"It's a social and cultural thing," said Bruce Mirken, spokesman for the Marijuana Policy Project, a Washington, D.C.-based marijuana advocacy group. "There are some parts of the country where social attitudes are just a little more cautious and conservative."

'Pros and cons'
Rep. Mary Lou Dickerson, a Seattle Democrat who is sponsoring the legalization bill in Washington state, said that she "wanted to start a strong conversation about the pros and cons of legalizing marijuana."

Under her bill, marijuana would be sold in Washington state's 160 state-run liquor stores, and customers, 21 and older, would pay a tax of 15 percent per gram. The measure would dedicate most of the money raised for substance abuse prevention and treatment, which is facing potential cuts in the state budget. Dickerson said the measure could eventually bring in as much to state coffers as alcohol does, more than $300 million a year.

"Our state is facing a huge financial deficit and deficits are projected for a few more years," Dickerson said, referring to the projected $2.6 billion hole lawmakers will need to fill next year. "We need to look at revenue and see what might be possible."

Allen St. Pierre, executive director of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, said that tough economic times across the country have lawmakers looking at everything, and may lead even more states to eventually consider the potential tax value of pot.

"The bean counters are now reporting back to their elected officials how much money is being left off the table," he said, adding that billions of dollars worth of pot is going untaxed.

Ron Brooks, president of the National Narcotics Officers' Associations' Coalition, said that he feared that, if legalized, marijuana would contribute to more highway accidents and deaths, as well as a potential increase in health care costs for those who smoke it.

State lawmakers, he said, need to ask themselves "if they believe we really will make all that revenue, and even if we did, will it be worth the suffering, the loss of opportunities, the chronic illness or death that would occur?"

Legalization isn't the only measure lawmakers across the country are weighing. About two dozen states, including Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Wisconsin, are considering bills ranging from medical marijuana to decriminalizing possession of small amounts of marijuana, St. Pierre said. Washington state is among the states that are considering decriminalization, with a bill that would reclassify adult possession of marijuana from a crime with jail time to a civil infraction with a $100 penalty.

Voter-driven initiatives
Fourteen states, including Washington state, already have medical marijuana laws, and 13 have decriminalization laws on the books, St. Pierre said. About two dozen cities across the country, including Seattle, make marijuana offenses a low law-enforcement priority.

Marijuana advocates said that while increased activity in the statehouse is heartening, change most likely will come at the ballot box through voter-driven initiatives.

"Inevitably, the politicians are going to be behind the curve on this stuff," Nadelmann said, noting that almost all of the medical marijuana laws came about by initiative.

This month, a group campaigning to put a marijuana legalization measure before California voters said it had enough signatures to qualify for the 2010 ballot.

That proposal would legalize possession of up to one ounce of marijuana for adults 21 and older. Residents could cultivate marijuana gardens up to 25 square feet (2.3 sq. meters). City and county governments would determine whether to permit and tax marijuana sales within their boundaries. And in Nevada earlier this month, backers of a move to legalize marijuana there filed paperwork creating an advocacy group aimed at qualifying an initiative for the 2012 election.
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Post by doobydave »

Do I understand correctly? Is the ending of marijuana prohibition (in Cali) being voted on, on January 12th?

http://www.420magazine.com/forums/inter ... ation.html

If so I am definitely keeping my fingers crossed. :D
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Twitch
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Post by Twitch »

doobydave wrote:Do I understand correctly? Is the ending of marijuana prohibition (in Cali) being voted on, on January 12th?

http://www.420magazine.com/forums/inter ... ation.html

If so I am definitely keeping my fingers crossed. :D
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Pauli Wallnuts
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Post by Pauli Wallnuts »

Twitch, do the government differentiate between outdoor & inddor grows like in the uk, i wanna be careful how i phrase this in case i start a riot :lol: do they call strong inddor green 'skunk' or is marijuana just marijuana no matter how it was grown or what the genetics of the plant are?
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yXbNLkNh ... re=related" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
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sonicblue
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Post by sonicblue »

Add Nevada to the list of states pushing for full on legalization for adults over 21.
The proposition would allow adults over 21 to purchase up to 28 grams with a tax of $50 for the ounce.
No smoking in public.
120 coffeeshops.
50 growers.

http://abcnews.go.com/Business/wireStory?id=9500241
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Sir Niall of Essex-sire
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Post by Sir Niall of Essex-sire »

Cant they block it on a federal level?
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Twitch
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Post by Twitch »

Pauli Wallnuts wrote:Twitch, do the government differentiate between outdoor & inddor grows like in the uk, i wanna be careful how i phrase this in case i start a riot :lol: do they call strong inddor green 'skunk' or is marijuana just marijuana no matter how it was grown or what the genetics of the plant are?
Not sure I understand the question :?:
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sh@dy
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Post by sh@dy »

Twitch wrote:
Pauli Wallnuts wrote:Twitch, do the government differentiate between outdoor & inddor grows like in the uk, i wanna be careful how i phrase this in case i start a riot :lol: do they call strong inddor green 'skunk' or is marijuana just marijuana no matter how it was grown or what the genetics of the plant are?
Not sure I understand the question :?:
he means if there is the dump believe in the US that indoor-grown (in the uk so called "Skunk") weed is stronger than outdoor-weed, and therefore if they would legalise the indoor-grown stuff as well....right?
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Post by SRH_Spaded »

sounds good and all, but 50 growers trying to keep up with the whole state's smoking habits seems alittle ridiculious to me, just my two cents.
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