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State House passes recreational marijuana reform bill
OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) - The House on Friday passed a measure that makes several changes to the state's new recreational marijuana market, including eliminating the three-tier tax structure and replacing it with a single excise tax of 37 percent at the point of sale.
House Bill 2136 passed the House on a 59-38 vote and now heads to the Senate for consideration. An amendment that passed Friday removed language from the original bill that would have only allowed local bans on licensed marijuana businesses if approved by the jurisdiction's voters.
To encourage more cities and counties to allow marijuana businesses, the bill directs the state to share pot revenue with jurisdictions that do so. It would also allow them to adopt more flexible zoning for where pot grows and stores can be located.
The original bill had set the excise tax rate at 30 percent, and Rep. Reuven Carlyle, a Democrat from Seattle who sponsored the measure, said that he personally believes the 37 percent rate negotiated with the Senate "is a mistake."
"But we find ourselves at a time of political addiction to the shaky perception of a new revenue pillar that is questionable at best," he said, noting budget assumptions of how much the new market might bring to the state. "I acknowledge that it is irresistible to some. I think we will come to regret that."
Portland Police issue a very Portland guide ahead of marijuana legalization
PORTLAND, Ore. -- Oregon is just days away from legalizing recreational marijuana, and the Portland Police Bureau is explaining just how much weed you can carry in the most Portland way possible -- by comparing it to a Voodoo doughnut.
You can legally carry an ounce of marijuana in public, or about the size of a voodoo doll doughnut. You can have 8 ounces with you at home, and anything over that is illegal (that's a lot of doughnuts).
On a more serious note, you can be arrested for Driving Under the Influence of Intoxicants or get a citation for using in a public place. Along those lines, if you do see someone using marijuana in a public place, police urge you NOT to call 911, unless there is an immediate public safety risk.
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