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WeedMaps Donates A Huge Amount Of Money Towards Marijuana Legalization In California

weedmaps logoWeedMaps has made a lot of money off of the marijuana industry. A lot of quotes and estimates I’ve seen puts their profits well into the tens of millions of dollars a year. WeedMaps values marijuana reform, and they are putting their money where their mouth is. According to SFGate, WeedMaps has donated $1,000,000 towards a yet-to-be named marijuana legalization effort, and another $1,000,000 into a political action committee fund:

One of California’s largest marijuana-related apps is donating $2 million toward the drive to legalize weed in the state — a move that not only would vastly expand its customer base but also foreshadows an expected increase in political activity from the cannabis industry.

Orange County dispensary-locating startup WeedMaps.com contributed $1 million Friday to a campaign committee called Californians for Sensible Reform, which will back what it feels will be the strongest marijuana legalization measure on the 2016 ballot. The company will also put another $1 million in a political action committee called Californians for Sensible Reform PAC that supports weed-friendly candidates.

“We’re doing it because legal adult use of marijuana is inevitable. California has always an innovator and we’re falling behind other states,” WeedMaps founder Justin Hartfield told The Chronicle Friday. “We wanted to do it to make a statement that we’re serious about this.”

I text Justin as soon as I heard the news, and thanked him for supporting reform. I told him I am extremely excited about what WeedMaps is doing and that I would support their cause as much as I could. I agree with Justin, California has always been an innovator in the cannabis world, and that California has fallen behind. I have said for a very long time that it’s going to take upwards of $20,000,000 to run a comprehensive, effective campaign in California, and that’s in addition to an untold amount of volunteer hours from people.

This WeedMaps donation is the first in what I hope to be many sizable donations towards one collective effort to end marijuana prohibition in California. I’d like to see WeedMaps lead the way on polling, and to field several versions of initiatives to see which one polls the best, and go from there. An initiative can have strong financial backing, but if it’s written poorly, it will be doomed.

If WeedMaps (and others united with them) can get solid polling results and package it with a big pile of cash, I hope to see people and organizations from inside and outside of California, and inside and outside of the cannabis industry, make significant donations. I want to see successful dispensaries step up, and national organizations and wealthy individuals step up too. The SFGate article mentioned names like billionaire Sean Parker. The article claimed that Sean Parker supported the successful Oregon legalization effort. I don’t know that that’s true, at least not financially, but either way, I hope to see people like him get behind an initiative, along with people like Bill Maher, and other celebrities. Legalization is WAY overdue in California.

 

  • newageblues

    Legalization is so way overdue in California that I don’t see why it should take 20 mil, unless you want a landslide. How much did Bill Lee spend, was it 1 1/2 mil to get signatures, which tapped him out, and no one spend much during the rest of the campaign, AND it got 46.5% back in 2010. 465 then translate into an easy victory in 2016, between the continuing change in public opinion and it being a presidential election year.

    • skoallio

      Legalization is “overdue”? yeah right, tell that to Patrick Kennedy and Kevin Sabet.

      • newageblues

        They’re not the ones slowing things down in CA. It’s the failure of reformers to unite that kept it from being legalized in 2012 and 2014.

        • skoallio

          Every pot smoker in California could have voted Yes on prop 19 when it was on the ballot. It still wouldve lost.

          • newageblues

            Richard Lee’s initiative wasn’t well funded, he spent all his money just getting it on the ballot, and that will be 6 long years ago by November 2016. You didn’t respond to the issue of a divided reform community in California (not all of whom use cannabis themselves). That’s where the problem lies, not with the CA voters’ view of whether weed should be legalized. They’re ready.

    • OGIS

      A landslide would be very, very nice. California, with it’s large number of electoral votes, is still the bellwether state in national politics. A state landslide for marijuana legalization will put the fear of God into politicians all over the nation.

  • Lawrence Goodwin

    A sincere Best Wishes! to WeedMaps and Californians to unite in 2016 and help put this era of division over cannabis policy in the past. A strong 2016 vote in favor would be a great way for CA to celebrate 20 years of beating back the Anti-Marihuana Tyranny. I can only hope more cannabis freedom will spread to the East Coast. Here in New York, in actual fact, we were WAY ahead of everyone else in 1980 by passing a medical cannabis research law–at the behest of one determined public official, Antonio Olivieri, who died that same year of brain cancer. Not long after, NY state officials conveniently forgot about that law. Then came not 4, but 8 long years of President Ronald “Just Say No” Reagan. Today, you Californians are extremely lucky to have the chance of VOTING on this, when in New York we’re entirely dependent on totally corrupt and biased state officials to dictate our cannabis policy.

    • MrBudWyzer

      I agree with what Lawrence Goodwin says…the Empire State is sucking hind teat on the marijuana issue…

    • Falcon89

      I live in Pennsylvania, no voter referendums, just a corrupt legislature. Thankfully, we got rid of the ultra corrupt Corbet and the new governor is willing to sign a medical bill, if it reaches his desk

  • khh

    Good work, Weed Maps!

    As a PS, I just donated $200 to Shona Banda’s legal defense fund. She is the so-called ‘cannabis oil activist’ in Wichita, KS whose child spoke out in a DARE class.

  • Cyndysub

    This is so f ing cool.

  • skoallio

    No amount of money could save you if the voters of a city want to ban marijuana shops.

    • khh

      LOL! That sounds like Kevin Sabet, who was forced to cite a few local zoning victories because the rest of his efforts were a complete shambles in 2014.

  • Cherokee

    CA is up against everyone that is motivated by greed instead of compassion

  • Finally, the well-funded pharmaceutical, alcohol, and prison lobbies have a little competition in California.

    • khh

      You have to somehow convince more 18-29 year olds to vote. They have the lowest turnout of any age group, but by far the highest level of support for legalization. Lots of potential votes to mine there.

      I think it would be worthwhile to court the 65+ age group, too. This is where the opposition is concentrated. This is also the group with the highest turnout rate. A few switches from ‘no’ to ‘yes’ could make a difference.

  • dontbe_greedy

    You mean Weedmaps, the company that shut down all of the established
    collectives in Santa Ana so they could set up their buddies like B Real
    with their dab party outlets? The same company that chose to fund a
    local CITY BACKED initiative that denies MEDICAL access to anyone under
    the age of 21 (like disabled vets who really, really need their medicine
    and 19 year old cancer patients)? You mean the same company who sold
    out the collectives who had originally been supporters of their
    organization; sold them up the river so their close buddies could corner
    the market in a lottery scheme set up with the local jurisdiction while
    they continue listing substandard delivery services whose compliance
    and quality is questionable at best?

    Great! With friends like that, we don’t need enemies at all. It’s a PROP
    19 screw job all over again. Same players, same tune, same ol’ crapola.
    It’s not going anywhere. LOL The dedicated patient activists of
    California made you spend a QUARTER OF A MILLION DOLLARS to buy the just
    the city of Santa Ana so your buddies would have an outlet for your
    substandard marijuana because apparently putting up Weedmaps ads that
    say “Smoke the same bud as B-Real, High Times Stoner of the Year” isn’t
    enough to bring people to your new shady “business” plan. How much to
    you think it will cost to buy the whole state Weedmaps? There’s 58
    counties and thousands of cities. I’ll let you do the math and then go
    put on your adult diapers. I don’t care how much money you have, act
    like an ADULT or GO HOME. The patients who really need this medicine
    don’t want your brand of “help”.

    By the way, the patient protection constitutional is well funded too.
    They just don’t have to dip into the corporate takeover’s pockets to get
    their funds. They have the true activists on their side. Therefore, we
    don’t have any incentive to sell out patient’s rights in order to push
    through legislation that benefits a single funder. This bill is going to
    work with ANY good legalization initiative, so long as it does not
    promote monopoly schemes or deny individual grower’s rights. You can do
    what you want now Weedmaps. It will be a waste of your time and your
    money if your corporate hacks think you are going to set up your buddies
    as the new weed barons of California.

  • lukster2015

    Good to hear, you’ve got to use the money made to fund good legalization causes.the more money put into the legalization effort, the better. When these idiot lawmakers finally see the money (tax money), being made off marijuana they may come around.if we continue to fund legalization efforts progress will be made eventually.

  • Some One

    weedmaps is pretty cool, but the majority of citizens like how the system is right now. If you wanna smoke get a rec.

  • maryjane

    Weedmaps has made both of it’s owners millionaires…2 million dollars to keep Cali on the map is smart business..

  • Don Marjan

    WeedMaps “legalization” plan is is a massive step backwards from gains made by medical marijuana activists. WeedMaps is a company that can not be trusted. Please vote NO on AUMA. WeedMaps wants to help big business corner the cannabis market. Please BOYCOTT WEEDMAPS.