Pot Supporters Get Approval to Put Another Recreational Legalization Measure Before CA Voters

Activist Steve Kubby has been instrumental in getting approval by the Secretary of State's office on Monday, July, 25, 2011 to begin circulating ballot petitions to legalize marijuana for recreational use. Proponents have until Dec. 19 to gather the 504,760 signatures needed to put the initiative on a ballot 2012 (Photo by Richard Lam)Activist Steve Kubby has been instrumental in getting approval by the Secretary of State’s office on Monday, July, 25, 2011 to begin circulating ballot petitions to legalize marijuana for recreational use. Proponents have until Dec. 19 to gather the 504,760 signatures needed to put the initiative on a ballot 2012 (Photo by Richard Lam)Supporters of legalizing recreational marijuana will try to win over California voters again next year, after the secretary of state’s office on Monday cleared them to begin circulating ballot petitions.

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This time they will argue that pot growers should be treated the same as vineyard owners or microbrewers. Those who grow marijuana for their own use would not be taxed, but those who sell it would be regulated by the state Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control.

Medical marijuana activist Steve Kubby, who is one of the key backers of the current movement, said keeping the recreational use of marijuana illegal was like the federal government’s prohibition of alcohol, which ended in 1933.

“We’re repealing bad laws,” he said in an interview Monday. “We’re creating a sales tax on the biggest crop in the state, and we’re bringing it within a regulated model.”

Kubby said the latest effort stands a better chance than Proposition 19, which fell 6 percentage points short of the majority vote it needed last November. That initiative would have made California the first state to legalize recreational marijuana use and sales.

Voter attitudes are evolving, said Kubby, who helped write the medical marijuana law California voters approved in 1996 and was the 1998 Libertarian candidate for governor. He said his measure also stands a better chance during a presidential election.

On Monday, the secretary of state’s office said proponents can begin gathering the 504,760 signatures they’ll need to collect by Dec. 19 to put the initiative on the June or November ballots next year. The timing depends on how quickly the signatures are submitted and verified, although Kubby said proponents plan to submit revisions that would likely push the measure to the November general election.

Critics said last year’s proposal, if voters had approved it, would have created a patchwork of marijuana policies by letting local governments permit and tax commercial cultivation and sales. Kubby’s proposal would require statewide regulation.

It also directs the state and local governments to avoid assisting the federal government in prosecuting marijuana crimes and seeks to remove marijuana from the federal government’s list of controlled substances.

Kubby is joined by retired Orange County Superior Court Judge James P. Gray as chief proponent. The third listed proponent is William R. McPike, the Fresno-area attorney who represented Kubby as he fought drug charges. Kubby fled to Canada before returning in 2006 to serve his sentence for a 2001 conviction for possession of a psychedelic mushroom and mescaline, a hallucinogen found in peyote.

Former Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger last year signed a bill making possession of up to one ounce of marijuana an infraction no more serious than a speeding ticket. Reducing the crime from a misdemeanor to an infraction means offenders no longer face arrest, do not have to appear in court and do not have a criminal record.

– Article from The Associated Press.


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  1. RG on

    MARIJUANA PROHIBITION MAKES LYME WEAPON POWERFUL – YOU HAVE TO FIGHT FOR REAL!

    The people in the present authority who deny your god given right to cure have to be prosecuted by the citizens of the world — like yesterday please.

    Jesse Ventura brings to consciousness for everyone the truth of the biological war creating a living holocaust on North America. Under Our Skin the Lyme disease awareness movie brings the devastating consequences of the biological weapon to the audiences of the world.

    Marijuana prohibition is what made the Lyme weapon so very powerful. The womb of the mother must be defended by every living citizen that cares about having any chance to be reborn healthy.

    PLEASE PLEASE DO YOUR PART NOW!