WEED FEED / John Ross Ferrara / Monday, Nov. 5, 2018 @ 11:55 a.m.

Weed Feed: Four States That Could Legalize Marijuana On Election Day

Graphic by Democracy Chronicles.

Four U.S. states will vote on various pieces of legislation tomorrow that — if passed — will drastically overhaul their current marijuana laws.

North Dakota and Michigan will have the choice to legalize recreational marijuana on election day, while Missouri and Utah will decide on legalizing medical marijuana.

Here’s what the proposed laws look like in each state.

North Dakota: Measure 3

North Dakota faces possibly the most drastic marijuana reformation of the four states. Measure 3 would not only legalize recreational marijuana for adults 21 and over, it would also expunge the records of previous offenders of nonviolent crimes involving legalized controlled substances like marijuana, and would also remove THC from its list of banned Schedule I drugs.

Measure 3 campaign adviser Cole Haymond is quoted on Ballotpedia.org as saying that the measure does not specifically outline how the industry will be taxed or regulated so that lawmakers can regulate the industry as they see fit.

“We leave our bill wide open so the legislature can do their job — regulations, taxes, zoning, whatever,” Haymond is quoted as saying. “This bill is by far the most progressive yet most conservative marijuana legalization bill that will be on any ballot across the country.”

Utah: Proposition 2

Utah is considering legalizing medical marijuana for the first time.

According to UtahPolicy.com, more than 77 percent of adults “‘strongly’ or ‘somewhat favor’  legalizing medical marijuana.”

USA Today reports that the legislation has strong support due to a “last-minute” compromise between medical marijuana supporters and the Utah-based Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. While the church technically still opposed the marijuana legalization. However, representatives of the church are offering that the compromise, which bans Utah residents from growing pot and sets up the framework for a state-run form of distribution, is more desirable than other potential options.

Michigan: Prop 18-1

Michigan’s Prop 18-1 appears to be is the most straightforward marijuana reformation bill of the bunch, legalizing recreational marijuana use for adults 21 and older.

The proposition would also allow residents to grow up to 10 plants, while limiting in-home possession to 10 ounces. If passed, people could also carry 2.5 ounces of marijuana in public as long as they don’t possess more than 15 ounces of concentrated THC.

Rolling Stone reports that taxes imposed on the industry would go toward infrastructure, clinical research and education among other things.

Missouri: Amendment 2, Amendment 3 and Proposition C

Maybe the biggest election mess among the four states, is Missouri’s three dueling marijuana measures.

While the measures are competing, all three focus on the legalization of medical marijuana.

Amendment 2 would legalize medical marijuana while imposing a 4 percent sales tax to fund veteran healthcare.

Amendment 3 would also legalize medical marijuana, but impose a 15 percent sales tax that would go toward a Biomedical Research and the Drug Development Institute.

Proposition C, rather than amending current laws, would establish a new law that would legalize medical marijuana and impose a 2 percent sales that would go toward veterans’ services, law enforcement, education and drug treatment.


The Weed Feed is a weekly column written by John Ross Ferrara.

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