Washington May Approve Marijuana Sales For Customers Over 21 In Nation's First State-Licensed Shops
Category: Legalization | Posted on Fri, October, 12th 2012 by THCFinder
Washington may become the first state in the nation to approve recreational sales of marijuana, according to the Associated Press. The marijuana would be taxed and sold at state-licensed shops to customers 21 and over.
The sale of this recreational marijuana may be approved on Nov. 6 if Initiative 502, a measure on the November ballot that would decriminalize small amounts of marijuana, is passed, according to The Seattle Times.
If I-502 passes the following will be enacted (via the AP):
Public use or display of marijuana would be barred.
No marijuana facilities could be located near schools, day cares, parks or libraries.
Employers would still be able to fire workers who test positive for pot.
It would remain illegal to privately grow marijuana for recreational use, though medical patients could still grow their own or designate someone to grow it for them.
It would be illegal to drive with more than 5 nanograms of THC, the active ingredient of cannabis, per milliliter of blood, if the driver is over 21; for those under 21, there would be a zero tolerance policy.
“There’s a real disconnect with pot,” Brooke Thompson, a retired teacher from Bainbridge Island who smoked marijuana when she was a young adult, told the AP. “It’s been criminalized and criminals are making money on it. The state could be making money on it, and using the taxes to go into education. It seems like a win-win, and it would be nice for Washington to be the testing ground on this.”
"Testing ground" is the key component. In Washington state, more than 241,000 people have been arrested for marijuana possession throughout the past 25 years, many of who were arrested in the past 10 years, according to a new study by a New York-based group of academics. These arrests have cost about $305.7 million over the past 25 years and $194 million in the past 10 years alone.
Legalizing and taxing marijuana at the same rate as alcohol and tobacco could save the United States up to $13.7 billion annually, according to Harvard economist Jeffrey Miron. About $7.7 billion could be saved by not having to enforce the current prohibition and about $6.2 billion could be yielded in taxes.
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