CANNABIS CULTURE – Jodie Emery, the wife of “Prince of Pot” Marc Emery, will be giving testimony on Wednesday March 16th at a Washington State Legislature work session for House Bill 1550, which will legalize, tax and regulate marijuana for adults.
HB 1550, introduced by Rep. Mary Lou Dickerson, would allow adults over 21 to purchase cannabis from licensed liquor stores, or grow their own at home. It also legalizes industrial hemp manufacturing and decriminalizes cannabis for 18 to 21-year-olds.
Jodie Emery will be testifying about the financial and societal benefits of legalizing marijuana, and discussing her husband Marc Emery’s extradition and 5-year US prison sentence.
Marc Emery’s original prosecutor in the Western District of Washington, John McKay, is also scheduled to testify in favour of the bill. He has recently begun advocating for legalization after observing the failure of prohibition and being dismissed as US Attorney by George Bush in 2006.
WHEN: Wednesday, March 16th, 2:45pm press conference, 3:30pm work session
WHERE: House Hearing Room A of the John L. O’Brien Building
House Bill 1550:
· Distributes cannabis at Washington State Liquor Stores for adults 21 and over
· Legalizes the domestic production of hemp, allowing Washington State Residents to obtain a grower’s license for $5,000. Residents can also obtain a license to grow commercial cannabis for the same rate, but it must be sold directly to the Washington State Liquor Control Board.
· Allows personal gardens of up to 50 square feet in size. We feel this is comparable to home brewing or wine making, is simple for law enforcement to determine if an individual is operating within the law, and appeases those who want to grow their own without endangering the distribution model we’ve envisioned.
· Compliments Medical Marijuana law. Our bill does not take away the rights of patients. In fact, we specifically omitted all language regarding medical marijuana so any restrictions are not construed as something that should be applied to patients.
· Decriminalizes cannabis for adults 18-21. It would be a civil infraction carrying a fine of $250, instead of a criminal act. Offenders would also be required to take Drug & Alcohol Information School, something that is not currently required by the criminal statute.
· Raises at least $420 million dollars in revenue per 2-year budget cycle. 75% of that money would be dedicated to Health Care, while 20% would go to Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment. The remaining 5% would be retained for administrative costs like added security at liquor stores.
· Specifically criminalizes importation of cannabis from out-of-state or other countries. It would be a Class C Felony to do so. This is to show the feds just how tightly we would regulate cannabis and that we have no intention of violating interstate commerce clauses
HB 1550 analysis: http://apps.leg.wa.gov/billinfo/summary.aspx?bill=1550