Maryland House Votes To Decriminalize Marijuana
Category: Legalization | Posted on Mon, April, 7th 2014 by THCFinder
A measure to decriminalize cannabis possession has passed through the Maryland House of Representatives in a decisive vote. The proposal would remove criminal penalties for the possession of up to 10 grams of cannabis.
Earlier this month Maryland’s Senate voted to approve the same measure, though the measure will go back to the Senate for one final vote given it was amended in the House Judiciary Committee. The House version, as with the Senate version, would make the possession of up to an ounce of cannabis a $100 ticket. However, the House version would make a second offense $250, and subsequent offenses $500; it would also call for drug rehab for those under 21.
Floor amendments were introduced to retain a misdemeanor conviction for those consuming in public, to reduce the possession limit to 5 grams, to double the fines and to retain criminal penalties for minors; all four were rejected.
Once approve by the Senate – which is expected Monday – the measure will go to Maryland’s governor for consideration.
Guatemalan President Will Present Plan To Legalize Marijuana
Category: Legalization | Posted on Fri, April, 4th 2014 by THCFinder
Guatemalan President Otto Perez Molina said Wednesday his country could present a plan before year’s end to legalize the production of marijuana and opium poppies. His comments came in an interview with Reuters.
Perez, a conservative and former general, has been a harsh critic of the US-led war on drugs in Latin America, repeatedly denouncing such policies at international forums. He has alsopreviously mentioned the possibility of moving to legalize marijuana and opium production, but has yet to put forward a concrete plan to do so.
But a presidential commission has been studying the issue of reforms in the country’s drug laws, and Perez told Reuters he expected the commission to make its recommendations by October and that the measures could be presented by year’s end. That could include a bill to legalize drugs, particularly marijuana, Perez said.
“The other thing we’re exploring… is the legalization of the poppy plantations on the border with Mexico, so they’re controlled and sold for medicinal ends,” Perez said. “These two things could be steps taken on a legal basis.”
While Afghanistan is by far the world’s largest opium producer, accounting for nearly 90% of global production, poppies are also grown in the Western hemisphere — in Mexico and Colombia, as well as Guatemala. Western hemisphere opium accounts for most of the heroin consumed in the United States.
Perez is keeping a careful eye on his northern neighbor, too. Mexico decriminalized drug possession in 2009, but has been loath to take further steps to end the drug war there, although there are now proposals afoot to legalize marijuana. Meanwhile, Mexican drug trafficking organizations, under pressure in their home country, have expanded their operations in Guatemala and other Central American nations.
It's high time to legalize pot, N.J. prosecutors say
Category: Legalization | Posted on Mon, March, 31st 2014 by THCFinder
Proponents of legalizing marijuana in New Jersey received a boost from an unlikely source — the very people who prosecute pot users.
The New Jersey State Municipal Prosecutors Association in Hamilton, N.J., has come out in favor of legalizing possession of marijuana. The support of the prosecutors association comes as two bills were introduced this month in the New Jersey State Legislature and as polls show a majority of Americans favor legalization.
One of the bills, introduced March 10, calls for a referendum asking voters to legalize the possession of an ounce or less of marijuana. Assemblymen Reed Gusciora, a Democrat from Trenton, N.J., who also is municipal prosecutor in Lawrence Township, N.J., and Michael Patrick Carroll, a Republican from Morris Township, N.J., are its sponsors.
"If it were up to me, I would make all quantities legal," Carroll said. "Why should the government be in the business of criminalizing marijuana? All it does is create administrative Al Capones and puts the power in the hands of gangsters."
From the government's perspective, Carroll said legalizing marijuana would be a huge benefit. Government could save money by hiring fewer police and parole officers.
Read more: http://www.usatoday.com
Alaska Marijuana Legalization Initiative Winning In Latest Poll
Category: Legalization | Posted on Mon, March, 31st 2014 by THCFinder
Marijuana legalization is on the ballot in Alaska, which is the only state so far that has gathered enough signatures to put marijuana legalization on the ballot for the 2014 Election. If you support marijuana reform in Alaska or beyond, you should be paying close attention to what is going on up there, and should make a donation to the campaign. Alaska votes on this in August, so there’s a chance that even before the November election in other states, there could be three legal states in America.
A poll was recently released by the Alaska State House of Representatives ‘Annual Caucus Statewide Issues Poll‘. The poll asked the following question, and had the following result:
And now a few questions regarding ballot measures that will appear on the Primary ballot this August…
8) One ballot measure would legalize the recreational use of marijuana in Alaska. It would also set terms
for the regulation, taxation, and sale of marijuana. Please tell me, if the election were held today, would
you most likely vote yes to support legalizing marijuana for recreational use, or no to oppose legalizing
marijuana for recreational use?
Yes, support legalizing ……………………………………………………………….. 52%
No, oppose legalizing ………………………………………………………………… 44%
Unsure ………………………………………………………………………………………. 4%
Poll: Majority Of California Voters Support Marijuana Legalization
Category: Legalization | Posted on Fri, March, 28th 2014 by THCFinder
California was a pioneer in marijuana politics when it placed Proposition 19 on the California ballot during the 2010 Election. Unfortunately, that initiative failed on election day. I was very sad when legalization didn’t make the ballot in 2012 in California, and it appears that sadness will continue through 2014. Hopefully national organizations and local activists can all get on the same page for 2016.
A poll was released recently which found that a slim majority of California voters support marijuana legalization. Below is more info about the poll, which was conducted by PPIC Statewide Survey:
As proponents of marijuana legalization consider another ballot measure, Californians are currently divided on legalizing marijuana: 49 percent say it should be legal, 47 percent say it should not be legal. Among likely voters, a slim majority (53%) say marijuana should be legal, and 44 percent say it should be illegal. Last September, 52 percent of adults and 60 percent of likely voters said it should be legal. Slim majorities of adults said it should be illegal in March 2012 and September 2011 (51% each). In 2010, California adults were divided (September 2010: 47% yes, 49% no; May 2010: 48% yes, 49% no). In a February Pew Research Center survey of adults nationwide, 54 percent said legal, 42 percent said illegal.
Majorities of independents (60%) and Democrats (57%) say marijuana should be legal; 62 percent of Republicans say it should be illegal. Blacks (63%) and whites (57%) say it should be legal, a majority of Latinos say it should be illegal (60%), and Asians are divided (44% yes, 48% no). Younger Californians are much more likely than adults age 35 and older to say it should be legal (64% 18 to 34, 39% 35 to 54, 47% 55 and older). There is majority support for legalizing marijuana in the San Francisco Bay Area (59%) and the Inland Empire (52%), while Central Valley residents are divided (50% yes, 49% no), and majorities of Orange/San Diego (55%) and Los Angeles (52%) residents are opposed.
I was surprised that a majority of Latinos support marijuana prohibition, considering how much they are affected by it. Minorities, Latino or otherwise, are more likely to be a victim of marijuana prohibition. Hopefully people see these results, and do more to educate the Latino population in California.
Long shot: California may yet vote on marijuana legalization in 2014
Category: Legalization | Posted on Thu, March, 27th 2014 by THCFinder
A California initiative that has failed once this year to collect enough signatures to put recreational marijuana on the ballot in November has been resurrected … but its future looks grim.
On Monday, California’s Secretary of State approved language for the “Marijuana Legalization. Initiative Statute”:
Legalizes under state law marijuana and hemp use, possession, cultivation, transportation, or distribution. Requires case-by-case review for persons currently charged with or convicted of nonviolent marijuana offenses, for possible sentence modification, amnesty, or immediate release from prison, jail, parole, or probation. Requires case-by-case review of applications to erase records of these charges or convictions. Requires Legislature to adopt laws to license and tax commercial marijuana sales. Allows doctors to approve or recommend marijuana for patients, regardless of age. Limits testing for marijuana for employment or insurance purposes. Bars state/local aid to enforce federal marijuana laws.
The sponsor of the initiative’s earlier incarnation, Berton Duzy, tried and fail in February to turn in enough signatures. On the California Cannabis Hemp Initiative website, he stated:
CCHI did not qualify for the ballot, but is entering a pledge drive phase to attempt to qualify for 2014. CCHI is the legalization vision of Jack Herer and allows more freedom for Cannabis patients, users, and providers than any other proposed law.
Taking a cold look at the prospects for this revised version or any of the competing version of legalization initiatives to hit the ballot this year is the LA Weekly:
CCHI has nowhere near the $3 million in cash it takes to get professional signature gatherers on the streets. Duzy said the group has less than $100,000 on-hand.
“We’ll have to have a million dollars to get it done by paid professionals by April 18, the last day to qualify, the last day to turn in signatures to make it to 2014,” he told us. “If we didn’t raise the money, then we could still try to qualify for 2016.”
The last proposed initiative apparently standing, the Marijuana Control, Legalization & Revenue Act, is also looking at April 18, with basically none of that $3 million or so it would take to make the ballot.
Backer Dave Hodges told us, “We’re still looking for a miracle.”
Read more: http://blog.seattlepi.com
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