Election day is fast approaching. No matter what side of the political fence (or wall) you stand on, there are some HUGE decisions to be made when it comes to Marijuana legalization. On November 8, FIVE states are voting on recreational Marijuana legalization, and four states are voting on medical marijuana measures. You want to be ready for when these states vote, right? We thought so. That’s why we put together all the information you need to get licensed in this incredibly lucrative business.
Here’s what you need to know to Vote Smart:
Recreational Marijuana on the Ballot:
Adult Use of Marijuana Act or Proposition 64:
Prop 64 would legalize possession of up to an ounce of cannabis and cannabis products from licensed retailers with permission to grow up to six plants for personal use by adults over the age of 21. The proposal also has restrictions on where pot can be consumed and defines the tax regulations that come along with legalization.
In 1996, California was the first state to legalize medical marijuana (MMJ), and many are speculating that if Prop 64 passes, it will pave the way for federal legalization in the near future.
- A “yes” vote on Prop 64 supports legalizing recreational marijuana for persons aged 21 years or older under state law and establishing certain sales and cultivation taxes.
If approved, this measure would allow adults to carry up to an ounce, grow up to six plants, and consume marijuana in non-public spaces. Retail marijuana sales would have a 15 percent tax imposed.
- A “yes” vote on Proposition 205 supports legalizing the possession and consumption of marijuana by persons who are 21 years of age or older.
With Question 1, Maine voters will decide whether to legalize recreational use for people 21 years of age and older, and this would also permit them to grow up to six plants. The proposal includes a 10 percent sales tax on retail marijuana and marijuana products. Question 1 limits places of consumption and allows municipalities to regulate or ban dispensaries.
- A “yes” vote on Question 1 supports legalizing recreational marijuana for adults over the age of 21.
Should Question 4 pass, adults 21 and older could legally possess up to an ounce of marijuana in public, keep up to 10 ounces of marijuana at home, and grow up to six plants for personal use. Marijuana sold in dispensaries would be subject to 10 percent tax, and individual counties, cities, and towns would have the ability to enact additional taxes or bans on recreational marijuana operations.
*If approved, marijuana legalization would take effect on December 15, 2016.
- A “yes” vote on Question 4 supports this proposal to legalize marijuana, but regulate it similar to alcoholic beverages.
The Regulation of Taxation and Marijuana Act or Question 2:
Question 2 would make it legal for adults age 21 and older to buy pot for recreational use and possess up to an ounce. Adults could also grow up to six plants as long as the residence is more than 25 miles away from a licensed dispensary.
Cannabis consumption would be restricted to private premises, which could include a retail marijuana store.
*Question 2 sets limits on the number of retail marijuana stores permissible in each county depending on the county’s population size.
- A “yes” vote for Question 2 supports legalizing the recreational use of one ounce or less of marijuana by individuals 21 years of age and older.
Medical Marijuana on the Ballot
Issue 6 and Issue 7
Arkansas voters will be voting on two medical marijuana initiatives, known as Issue 6 and Issue 7, come November.
Passing Issue 6 would legalize marijuana for medical use in Arkansas, allowing for the establishment and regulation of marijuana dispensaries and cultivation facilities.
Issue 6 would allow licenses for eight grow facilities and 40 dispensaries statewide. Issue 7 would allow one non-profit care center per 20 pharmacies (or 37 total dispensaries).
*Issue 6 would NOT allow patients to grow their own MMJ at home while Issue 7 would allow some patients to do so.
- Issue 6: A “yes” vote supports legalizing medical marijuana for 17 qualifying conditions, creating a Medical Marijuana Commission, and allocating tax revenue to technical institutes, vocational schools, workforce training, and the General Fund.
- Issue 7: A “yes” vote supports legalizing medical marijuana for 56 qualifying conditions, putting the Arkansas Department of Health in charge of implementing the program, and allocating tax revenue to providing low-income patients with medical marijuana.
Florida Medical Marijuana Legalization Initiative or Amendment 2
Amendment 2 would have the Florida Department of Health register and regulate dispensaries, as well as issue ID cards to patients and caregivers.
*A successful constitutional amendment in Florida requires the approval of at least 60 percent of voters (a supermajority) to pass.
- A “yes” vote for Amendment 2 supports legalizing medical marijuana for individuals with specific debilitating diseases or comparable debilitating conditions as determined by a licensed state physician.
Montana Medical Marijuana Initiative or Ballot Issue 24
Ballot Issue 24 would repeal the three-patient limit and other requirements, such as unannounced inspections and required reviews for physicians who provide certifications to more than 25 patients per year. Chronic pain and PTSD would also become qualifying MMJ conditions.
- A “yes” vote on Ballot Issue 24 supports repealing the three-patient limit for medical marijuana providers.
North Dakota Compassionate Care Act or Measure No. 5:
Measure 5 would allow for the possession of up to three ounces of marijuana for qualifying conditions such as AIDS, cancer, epilepsy, and glaucoma, and patients who live more than 40 miles from a licensed dispensary would be permitted to grow up to eight plants.
- A “yes” vote on Measure No. 5 supports legalizing the use of medical marijuana to treat defined debilitating medical conditions, such as cancer, AIDS, hepatitis C, ALS, glaucoma, and epilepsy, and developing certain procedures for regulating medical marijuana growing, dispensing, and usage.
There are undoubtedly a lot of important measures to consider this election no matter where you live, and the legalization of marijuana for medicinal is among them. According to Ballotpedia, the 2016 ballot presents a record number of measures that would legalize or decriminalize marijuana, with as many as 82.0 million residents living in states that could loosen rules. That means the power to turn marijuana into a more profitable and respectable business is in your hands — don’t waste it!