Ten years ago, the idea that medical marijuana would be legal in Michigan was nothing more than a pipe dream to many people. And yet here we are. Nine years ago, the Michigan Medical Marijuana Act of 2008 was signed into law. And while there has been a great deal of confusion over the years, lawmakers work to close loopholes and rewrite grey areas. It has been almost a decade since weed was legalized for medicinal purposes.
For many, however, it was only the beginning. The Coalition to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol is hoping to add Michigan to the growing list of U.S. states that have legalized marijuana for recreational purposes. This would mean that you would no longer need a painful or terminal illness in order to smoke marijuana or consume ‘medibles’ in Michigan.
There are currently eight states in the U.S. where marijuana is legal for recreational purposes, including:
- Washington, DC
In a petition turned in to the Secretary of State last week, the Coalition is seeking to have marijuana become like any other regulated commodity in Michigan (think: alcohol and cigarettes). If the petition language is approved by the state Board of Canvassers, the Coalition will have 180 days to collect 252,523 signatures from registered voters in Michigan. The goal however, is 300,000, which they’re certain they can get.
Jeff Irwin, a former State Representative, heads up the Coalition as its political director. Irwin says that this ballot would give the citizens of Michigan a chance to bring an end to the thousands of pointless marijuana-related arrests that take place every year in this state. In addition to reducing the number of arrests clogging up the courts, the petition also proposes to tax recreational marijuana sales at a rate of 16%.
The estimated revenues from the taxes alone would be in excess of $100 million.
The Coalition proposes that the tax revenue generated by marijuana sales be split up as follows: 35% for K-12 education, 35% for roads, 15% to communities that allow marijuana businesses to operate, and 15% to counties where marijuana business are actually located.
In addition, the petition proposes that people be allowed to possess recreational marijuana in 2.5 ounce quantities, with a 10 ounce limit for how much recreational users are allowed to keep at home at any one time. They also suggest that the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affair (LARA) to oversee and regulate the business.
Assuming the petition is approved, and the required number of signatures are collected, there is a still long way to go before this becomes a law in Michigan. Assuming that it ever makes it that far! Until then, please remember that possessing even the smallest amount of marijuana for recreational purposes is still considered to be illegal in the state of Michigan, unless you are a licensed patient or caregiver! Also remember that federal law says that having any amount of pot is a crime.
Drug crimes are still taken very seriously here in Michigan. Some law enforcement officers are using the federal stance on marijuana as a way to prosecute people for something that is legal on a state level. So if you or a loved one have been accused of possessing, selling, producing or transporting any illegal drugs, call the experienced attorneys at The Kronzek Firm today. We are available at 866 766 5245, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, to help you during times of crisis.