Monday, December 10, 2012

Marijuana is legal in two states; Regulation writing commences

On Dec. 10, 2012, Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper signed Amendment 64 which was passed by 55.34 percent of Colorado voters on November 6, 2012. This act puts Amendment 64 into effect. It is legal to possess and use marijuana in Colorado privately, and to grow three mature marijuana plants and keep the harvest. One may also give away for no consideration up to one ounce of marijuana. Today the Governor appointed a task force to develop regulations to carry out the Amendment's provisions creating a legal industry to cultivate, process and sell marijuana under state law.

Previously, on Dec. 6, 2012, Washington Initiative 502 took effect, pursuant to its terms, having been passed by 55.7 percent of Washington voters. It is legal to possess and use up to one ounce of marijuana (and larger quantities of marijuana infused products), but not to grow it, buy it or sell it. According to the Secretary of State's website, in contested statewide races, marijuana got more votes than every other candidate, other than U.S. Senator Maria Cantwell. Every statewide office holder who won in a contest, from the Governor-elect, Jay Inslee on down, got fewer votes than legal marijuana and Initiative 502. Marijuana even got more votes than President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden.

Marijuana legalization in Washington is under the jurisdiction of the Liquor Control Board.
On Dec. 5, 2012, the Liquor Control Board published a notice that it is seeking public comment to begin to develop rules to license producers of marijuana. They want written suggestions and comments by Feb. 10, 2013, by email, fax or mail.

By the way, outgoing Governor Christine Gregoire, in 2011, filed a petition with the Drug Enforcement Administration to reschedule marijuana for medical purposes.

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