Alaska Mayors Group Opposes Legalizing Marijuana

A group of Alaska mayors has come out in opposition of the ballot measure to legalize, tax and regulate recreational marijuana in Alaska.

The Alaska Conference of Mayors announced Thursday that it had voted to oppose the initiative during an Aug. 13 meeting in Nome, and pledged to donate $5,000 to “Big Marijuana. Big Mistake. Vote No on 2,” a campaign opposing the initiative.

At a press conference in Anchorage, representatives of the group voiced concerns over public safety issues, increased enforcement costs and whether legalized marijuana would lead to an increase in social issues such as high school dropout rates, but offered few specifics as to what such issues and costs may look like in their communities should marijuana be legalized.

Three mayors attended the conference at Northwest Strategies’ downtown Anchorage office: Dan O’Hara, mayor of the Bristol Bay Borough; Larry DeVilbiss, mayor of the Matanuska-Susitna Borough, and DeLena Johnson, Palmer mayor and Alaska Conference of Mayors president. The Alaska Conference of Mayors is a parent organization of the Alaska Municipal League, a statewide, voluntary, nonprofit organization, according to its website.

Out of the group’s 95 members, 23 were present for the Aug. 13 vote. After a “long discussion,” those present voted unanimously in opposition of Ballot Measure 2, O’Hara said.

– Read the entire article at Alaska Dispatch News.