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Ballot Initiative Would Legalize Marijuana in California

4 years ago
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An initiative to legalize marijuana in California has qualified for the November ballot after supporters gathered enough signatures by the Wednesday night deadline.

If voters approve it, the new law would allow Californians 21 or older to possess up to an ounce of marijuana for personal use. Adults would also be able to grow up to 25 square feet of pot per residence or parcel.

Cities and counties would be allowed to pass ordinances that would allow them to tax the cultivation, transportation and sale of marijuana.

It would the be the first law of its kind in the country.

Pot advocates gathered more than the 433,971 signatures needed for the measure -- known as the Regulate, Control and Tax Cannabis Act of 2010 -- to make the ballot, The Los Angeles Times reported.

Opponents of the initiative, including prosecutors and police, say legalization would lead to higher crime rates. In 2008, voters defeated an attempt to relax the state's drug laws.

Supporters say state-run studies have found that taxes on marijuana could raise as much as $1.4 billion in annual revenue.

Polls show that a majority of California voters support legalization. A Field Poll last year found that 56 percent of state voters want to legalize and tax pot as a way to help solve the state's fiscal crisis.

California voters approved marijuana for medical use in 1996.
Filed Under: Ballot Measures

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