States Voting to End Prohibition in 2016
Anyone and everyone who has ever said to themselves that marijuana should be legal, should be proud. Especially of Colorado and Washington. There are laws implemented legalizing the use of medical and recreational marijuana in these states.
Celebrate the Continuing Efforts
While that is a great accomplishment, they have taken it a step further. They have implemented dispensaries where people can buy marijuana for medicinal and recreational purposes. Places where they can buy without fear or the many different variables that comes from buying off the black market. There are many other states that have just legalized medicinal use of marijuana. And there are many states that are also taking measures to decriminalize marijuana.
Who is Next
It's hard to keep track of these new laws and things are changing every day. There are 7 key states that you need to keep an eye on. These states may be with in just two years of having the same infrastructure that we are seeing in Colorado and Washington. Those states include Arizona, Maine, Nevada, Missouri, Hawaii, California and Massachusetts.
No tolerance for marijuana in the state of Nevada may quickly come to an end in 2016. I suppose they didn't want to be led out of the booming tourist industry that is being seen in Colorado and Washington. The initiative if passed would allow individuals 21 and older to legally use and possess up to an ounce of dried flower. If passed it also calls for a 15% sales tax to be implemented which would go to the k-12 public education system in the state. Passing of this bill would be a saving grace for the patients involved in Nevada's medical marijuana program. Currently they have to grow their own or buy from the black market since implemented in 2001.
California has been one of the biggest pioneers in ending the prohibition on marijuana. They were on of the first states to implement a medical marijuana program in 1996. They have paved the path for many to follow. California's economy is of the biggest in the United States. If marijuana is completely legalized it could have a major impact on the economical state of the country. The ballot to end prohibition in the state will likely not reach voters until 2016. However it is already receiving support from some unexpected sources. The League of California Cities and the California Police Chief Association are both sponsors of the bill in legislature. This bill would grant state officials control of the industry. This is very surprising support from both of these organizations since they have both been in opposition of the legalization since proposition 215 was approved in 1996.
Most of the states that we are seeing taking motions to legalize or decriminalize marijuana are in the West. However there is an advocate on the east coast as well that is taking steps toward a new prohibition and that is Maine. Recently they received enough signatures on a petition to allow progress to this initiative. Seeing this initiative pass will hopefully give momentum to other New England states. We hope it will push them to take steps of their own toward ending prohibition as well. The statement heard from David Bauer the political director for the marijuana policy project was "we have bigger fish to fry. There are violent crimes going on there are property crimes and that is where our police resources should be spent." is a common outlook driving many states to take appropriate steps
The residents of Massachusetts are no stranger to speaking out about controversial topics in our nation. Being the first state in the US to legalize same-sex marriage, they are now getting ready to make history again. This will be done by voting to be one of the first states to completely end prohibition on marijuana. The referendum has been filed so now it is just up to the voters to make the right decision when the ballot comes around in 2016. Remember to always vote green.
With a successful medical marijuana program in place, it is not surprising to see that Arizona also voting to end the prohibition on marijuana. With over 50,000 residents involved in their medical marijuana program, implementing an infrastructure such as Colorado's would be beneficial to everyone. Paperwork has already been filed which models very closely to the infrastructure in Colorado. Arizona also has a unique benefit geographically as it shares borders with Mexico and two other states that will also be voting on similar initiatives in 2016. California and Nevada.
Aloha Mary Jane is what the residents of Hawaii are hoping to legally be able to say after they vote on an initiative in 2016. There have been previous initiatives put into play in the state that has been knocked down in the past. The hopes are that a voter backed initiative and seeing the potential for large tax revenues from the tourist industry will help to persuade legislators.
Being the gateway to the west it would be sad to not see an initiative passed in Missouri. Hopes were high for a ballot in 2014 but it was removed as it was proven the state did not quite have the support that they needed for it to push through. Since the boom in States legalizing marijuana has been so great since 2014 they're taking another pass at it in 2016. Hopes are that the major shift of opinions of this plant across the nation will help voters make the right decision in 2016.