Medical Marijuana Initiative Campaign Launches In California
Joe | Jan 26, 2012 | Comments 0
Supported by a rather powerful group that includes The Marijuana Policy Project, CA NORML, and The Drug Policy Alliance, a medical marijuana initiative campaign has been launched in an attempt to regulate medical cannabis in California and clear up the confusion surrounding the industry be explicitly allowing dispensaries.
If the ballot language is approved, proponents of the bill will have until April 20th to get over 500,000 valid signatures to get it on the 2012 statewide ballot.
The Medical Marijuana Regulation, Control, and Taxation Act(MMRCTA) would create a state agency, the Bureau of Medical Marijuana Enforcement (BMME), to regulate medical marijuana cultivation and distribution. The bureau’s 21-person governing body would include a mix of patients, patient advocates, industry representatives, union representatives, law enforcement, and other stakeholders appointed by the governor or lieutenant governor.
A 2.5% tax on medical marijuana sales would fund the new agency and go to other services in the state. Backers of the bill hope to make it very difficult for cities and counties to ban dispensaries by mandating a dispensary per every 50,000 residents. It would also require state registration of all people involved in the industry.
The measure has some of the biggest players in Golden State medical marijuana politics behind it. Its official proponents are Don Duncan, state director for Americans for Safe Access, the country’s leading medical marijuana advocacy group, and Ron Lind, president of the United Food and Commercial Workers Local 5, which represents unionized dispensary workers around the state.
While it would probably do little to call off the federal crackdown currently hitting the state, the initiative would go a long way toward lessening confusion within the state, especially if a legalization measure fails to pass and residents are left under the auspices of medical cannabis for at least two more years.
And be sure to check out our Open Letter on Behalf of 30 Million Cannabis Users and join us in our fight!