Marijuana Initiative

03/25/2014 12:08 pm0 commentsViews: 22

LOS ANGELES (CNS) – Backers of an initiative that would legalize
possession, use, cultivation, transportation and distribution of marijuana and
hemp have until Aug. 18 to submit enough signatures to qualify the measure for
the November ballot.
If approved by voters, the measure would also require the Legislature to
adopt laws to license and tax commercial commercial marijuana sales.
The initiative also would require case-by-case review of people charged
or convicted of nonviolent marijuana offenses for possible sentence
modification, amnesty or immediate release from prison, jail, parole or
probation.
The initiative’s other provisions include:
– allowing doctors to approve or recommend marijuana for patients,
regardless of age;
– limit testing for marijuana for employment or insurance purposes; and
– bar state or local aid to enforce federal marijuana laws.
The measure would also exempt medical marijuana collectives from
licensing and regulatory requirements and allow local governments to ban or
limit the number of marijuana businesses.
The initiative would result in reduced costs potentially exceeding $100
million annually for state and local governments related to enforcing certain
marijuana-related offenses, handling the related criminal cases in the court
system and incarcerating and supervising certain marijuana offenders, according
to an analysis prepared by the Legislative Analyst’s Office and Department of
Finance.
The analysis also found that passage of the initiative would generate
potential net additional tax revenues of a few hundred million dollars related
to the production and sale or marijuana and industrial hemp

Photo by Gary McCarthy Industrial hemp

Photo by Gary McCarthy
Industrial hemp

, a portion of which
would be required to be spent on marijuana-related research and other
activities.
Valid signatures from 504,760 registered voters — 5 percent of the
total votes cast for governor in the 2010 general election — must be submitted
by Aug. 18 to qualify the measure for the November ballot.
Backers of the initiative received permission from Secretary of State
Debra Bowen Monday to begin gathering signatures.
Signature-gathering is underway for three other initiatives that would
legalize marijuana.

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