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Four Different Initiatives In California Could Doom Marijuana Legalization In 2016

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california marijuanaMarijuana legalization in California is long overdue. California first voted on marijuana legalization in 2010. Proposition 19 failed on Election Day, but it started the conversation in California and beyond about what it would take to successfully legalize marijuana. Since then California marijuana legalization has failed to gain traction. No initiative made the ballot in 2012 or 2014. 2016 is the year that many activists and organizations are aiming for, but competing initiatives could doom California’s legalization efforts, as it has in the past.

There are currently four campaigns working to legalize marijuana in California. Below is a brief description of each, per SF Gate:

The group behind the Marijuana Control, Legalization and Revenue Act of 2014 – which failed to gather enough signatures to appear on the ballot in 2014 — announced today that they want public input on 2016 language. The group wants to be the most inclusive, they say, and is using an open Google Document to solicit ideas.

The MCLR’s announcement follows opening moves by a second group that failed to make the ballot in 2014, or 2012, or 2010 — the California Cannabis Hemp Initiative. That group promises to legalize twelve pounds of pot for personal use and has been working to stoke its base by appearing in a string of videos by HashBar TV.

Thirdly, Californians can now review the California Artisan Cannabis Initiative – 2016 which comes from Northern California lawyer Omar Figueroa, who also participated in failed initiative efforts in years past. The CACI hopes to protect small farmers from post-legalization competition by bigger businesses.

Lastly, there is the most credible group, ReformCA — also called the Coalition for Cannabis Policy Reform. ReformCA comprises the coalition that formed during 2010-s Proposition 19, and includes California NORML, the NAACP, and Oaksterdam University. ReformCA is working with the Marijuana Policy Project and the Drug Policy Alliance, and has been focused on conducting stakeholder meetings in northern and southern California.

California is going to be the most expensive state to get an initiative passed in. Estimates are as high as 20 million dollars. A volunteer-only effort is not going to be enough to get on the ballot, nor is a medium-sized financial foundation. If California is going to legalize, it needs to be an ‘all hands on deck’ effort, and everyone needs to work together. I get that there are multiple visions for what marijuana legalization should look like in California, but something needs to happen to bring everyone together. Even the most well financed drug reform organizations can’t do it on their own. It would be a shame to see another election pass without a legalization vote in California. I will be keeping my fingers crossed that a fair, reasonable solution is found.

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114 Comments

  1. I’ve grown many times, always successfully and always illegally. That’s a shame. Any reasonable legalization law MUST include the right of individual users to grow their own.

  2. ChristopherABrown on

    I’ve sent a message to all of the listed initiative authors asking if they are wiling to work together by creating a web forum to select the best initiative and then all support one in gathering signatures. These three,

    http://www.marijuanacontrollegalizationrevenueact.com

    http://www.californiacannabis2016.com

    This one had no email or contact page, but I tweeted to @VoteToLegalize the message in pieces.
    http://www.cannabispolicyreform.org

    The forth I’d already tried to contact. It seem most comprehensive because it addresses hemp industrial agriculture also.

    moxxxxrj@yahoo.com
    http://www.cchi2016.org

    ________
    Competing ballot initiatives

    Hello Omar and Heather,

    I see a serious problem with competing initiatives and would like to see the authors of all initiatives debate and agree upon which one serves the peoples interests in cannabis/hemp best. Would you consider collaborating with other authors and starting a web forum with a section where only authors of initiatives or registered non profit collectives could post, but the public can access and read with another section for the public to post in? A polling feature there would help the decision to solidify.

    We need to unify on this to prevail.

    Sincerely,

    Chris

    Hopefully others can support the unification of efforts to get one initiative passed and on the ballot for 2016.

  3. Haywood Jeblowme on

    That’s pretty stupid. There’s no higher tax than having your ass busted and your car+house seized by the cops!

  4. Anyone who speaks English should be opposed to regulation/ prohibition of something as benign as cannabis. Anything else makes us all look like illerate folks who live off of spearing eachother in the back. The prohibitionists/ regulators are in a panic now because us Americans are actually starting to win back our freedoms.

  5. The only honest and reasonable thing to do is to allow the unlimited growth and possession of the cannabis plant and its harvests. Any restriction will come with the wasteful, immoral, and selective eforcement of the restrictions upon those who violate these unconstitutional restrictions. Government can help make our world a more abundant place. Corrupting government to create artificial scarcity is immoral and self defeating in the long run. What if such ideas spread into industries such as food production? Diverting government from vital tasks such as managing adequate infrastructure, food, and energy through “sin tax” style price gauging cannabis regulation/ prohibition policies tends to raise the costs of the necessities of life. Cartels must not be rewarded for 80 years of suppressing industrial hemp.
    The government has more important tasks than enforcing limits on self – provision of cannabis. Not all people who may be part of a “greedy corporation” are proponents of overregulation. There are actually a lot of wealthy people with enough sense to want to live in a society without artificial scarcity and who want to benefit from the innovation and undercut pricing that comes along with actual real competition.
    Buying influence to create artificial scarcity of cannabis is not a part of a free market system which encourages innovation and competitively priced quality products. Such is not even part of a facist system – only corrupt communists and their naive slaves would advocate for as much.
    I hypothesize that the cartels who are trying to have an outright and in the open monopoly of the cannabis industry are much the same groups who have been giving people criminal records and imprisoning them for buying their products. If not disempowered, they may well come up with other dishonest ways of giving the American population criminal records and high rates of imprisonment. I personally have reason to believe they are already attempting to do this to some.
    The only honest and reasonable thing to do is to let people grow and posess cannabis without any limits at all. Any restrictions will come with the interrupted lives and wasted dollars of enforcing upon those who will violate the restrictions. A restricted cannabis market equates to continued high rates of pharmeceutical dispersal, which as we know results in more American deaths than all “illegal” drugs do combined. Cannabis can not kill, and alcohol can. There are not ridiculous limits on the stockpiling and self provision on alcohol, and there most certainly should not be on cannabis. In fact, it is potentially misleading to even compare cannabis to alcohol. Alcohol is so harmful that it is not really comparable at all to unpoisoned cannabis.
    As industrial hemp finally becomes legal, state residents should embrace the fact that their neighbooring states growing hemp means that the whole country (and world) can benefit from economies of scale. We must not let the anti – free market, price – gauging – of – their – often underprivelaged comsumers – corrupt “communist” style – cartels and their bag running slaves stand in the way of industrial hemp. It takes a dellusional naivity to think that decitfully justifying limits on cannabis, be it for hemp or “pot”, would not self incriminate one in a free – market country such as the United States.

    I like humanity and the Earth. I like western culture. I do not see people moving to China, so they should not act like communists.

  6. Every Human IspartAmerican on

    The only honest and reasonable thing to do is to allow the unlimited growth and possession of the cannabis plant and its harvests. Any restriction will come with the wasteful, immoral, and selective eforcement of the restrictions upon those who violate these unconstitutional restrictions. Government can help make our world a more abundant place. Corrupting government to create artificial scarcity is immoral and self defeating in the long run. What if such ideas spread into industries such as food production? Diverting government from vital tasks such as managing adequate infrastructure, food, and energy through “sin tax” style price gauging cannabis regulation/ prohibition policies tends to raise the costs of the necessities of life. Cartels must not be rewarded for 80 years of suppressing industrial hemp.
    The government has more important tasks than enforcing limits on self – provision of cannabis. Not all people who may be part of a “greedy corporation” are proponents of overregulation. There are actually a lot of wealthy people with enough sense to want to live in a society without artificial scarcity and who want to benefit from the innovation and undercut pricing that comes along with actual real competition.
    Buying influence to create artificial scarcity of cannabis is not a part of a free market system which encourages innovation and competitively priced quality products. Such is not even part of a facist system – only corrupt communists and their naive slaves would advocate for as much.
    I hypothesize that the cartels who are trying to have an outright and in the open monopoly of the cannabis industry are much the same groups who have been giving people criminal records and imprisoning them for buying their products. If not disempowered, they may well come up with other dishonest ways of giving the American population criminal records and high rates of imprisonment. I personally have reason to believe they are already attempting to do this to some.
    The only honest and reasonable thing to do is to let people grow and posess cannabis without any limits at all. Any restrictions will come with the interrupted lives and wasted dollars of enforcing upon those who will violate the restrictions. A restricted cannabis market equates to continued high rates of pharmeceutical dispersal, which as we know results in more American deaths than all “illegal” drugs do combined. Cannabis can not kill, and alcohol can. There are not ridiculous limits on the stockpiling and self provision on alcohol, and there most certainly should not be on cannabis. In fact, it is potentially misleading to even compare cannabis to alcohol. Alcohol is so harmful that it is not really comparable at all to unpoisoned cannabis.
    As industrial hemp finally becomes legal, state residents should embrace the fact that their neighbooring states growing hemp means that the whole country (and world) can benefit from economies of scale. We must not let the anti – free market, price – gauging – of – their – often underprivelaged comsumers – corrupt “communist” style – cartels and their bag running slaves stand in the way of industrial hemp. It takes a dellusional naivity to think that decitfully justifying limits on cannabis, be it for hemp or “pot”, would not self incriminate one in a free – market country such as the United States.

  7. Corporate Cannabis Greed Rush

    This article was written from the point of view of the coporate greed rush and the dispensaries. The author did not bother to feature the the position of the medical users and growers.

    The corporations and dispensaries do not want any competition from home grows and have be lobbied the government to enact the prohibition by over regulation and costs. Some legal corporate growers have stated that they wanted to sell grams of cannabis at up $32.

    These alcoholic sadistic monsters refuse to allow medical users enough plants to have a sustainable home personal production of affordable medicine or access to seeds and the clones necessary in any plant count medical system.

    A new La Ferrari Super car weighted about 1,400 kilograms, and cost about $1,400,000; or approximately one dollar a gram one thousand dollars a kilogram. The La Ferrari was made in Maranello, Italy, in 2013, at a large manufacturing complex of state of the art computerized buildings that cost approximately one billion dollars. Super cars are the toys purchased by billionaires.

    Medical cannabis users are often disabled and the disabled are the lowest income group in America. Yet corporate greed heads expect the indigent to pay ten to twenty times the cost of a Ferrari per gram; 10,000 to 20,000 a kilogram, for a weed flower that grows wild on every inhabited continent on Earth.

  8. I like to thank you John for your article you are the only person who is reporting on these initiative that actually states who is backing each plan. In all of the articles I have seen on this story the blog/journo always reports the same thing using the generic term “backers” without giving a breakdown who the actual backers for each initiative are making it a very frustrating read. I personally would like to know who the “backers” are so I can determine for myself which of these “backers” has the best support, the better proposal and which initiative has the best chance of getting pass in the state.

  9. Hey everyon

    I use to live in Cali n I used to smoke the real OG…

    Now I moved to another country and I’d like to find someone reliable to proceed to shipments of small quantity ;-)
    skype: samourai888

  10. Michael Stewart on

    “Marijuana Policy Project and the Drug Policy Alliance, and has been focused on conducting stakeholder meetings in northern and southern California.”

    Money talks, and the wishes of the people do not make a sound? CCHI2016 is the very thing to end a ridiculous “prohibition” without allowing the above to completele commandeer and control all facets of hemp use and still keep you under the thumbs of greedy bullies. The above are nothing more than manipulative investors barking for profits. Bother to read Jack Herer’s HEMP Initiative, and check out his book. The Emperor Wears No Clothes

  11. I saw greed defeat the legalization 010 still open range here….check out Western Civil War of Incorporation….history rhymes again.Bottom line legal, no jail time till feds ring the bell. Come what may Kalifornia still the King…for now

  12. Weedless in Shasta County on

    My disabilities render me unable to grow cannabis. In the past I have relied on collectives however the overreaching arm of the local law has banned outdoor grows and collectives causing me to have no safe access. Without legalization folks like me are at the mercy of uncaring law enforcement that would rather go after peaceful cannabis growers than tweakers, thieves, and murders. If you don’t believe me check out the stats for Shasta County – high violent crime, too many AB 109ers, etc. VOTE YES IN 2016!

  13. Weedless in Shasta County on

    That’s is solely the reason it did not pass! GREED! I know as I live in Shasta and work in Tehama Counties. The growers were afraid they would lose the millions they make each year. Now nobody can grow outdoor in these counties while meth flows freely! All of our collective storefronts in Redding (the town in Shasta Co.) were closed down in 2010. Growers vote YES for legal cannabis or lose the rights for safe access for all of us!

  14. Shirley LeGitte on

    All the legalization measures I have seen so far, are too restrictive on personal cultivation…no way I’m voting for that!

  15. dontbe_greedy on

    EH, just pick one and pass it. As long as they pass the “compassionate and sensible access act” as a constitutional amendment as well, it will turn out just fine :)

  16. Well if California’s bill has crazy ass taxes like Colorado 25% then it will not get my vote.
    I want low tax on it or no Vote!!!!
    it will be a cold day in Hell before I pay more then 8% tax for it.
    lets not forget there is also sale tax so I don’t want the weed tax to be higher then most sale tax.

  17. Brenda A. Linder on

    That’s simply not true. Every responsible adult in Cali does not have access. Here in the heart of “Marijuana over my dead grant money!” lives on, medical users have no lawful store front collective, and are unable to grow even one plant inside or outside of their home. It’s not the Wild West that some in the country like to label. Here in Fresno and surrounding counties, patients are still forced to obtain their choice of medicine through unlawful means. The cartel and drug dealers are thriving. But, like our sheriff says, it’s all about our safety and crime control. I too am very concerned about the divisiveness here in Cali for legalization. It buried the initiative in 2010 and the patients in this part of the state will continue to be deprived of their rights under 215 until a state law passes which prevents local politicians from legislating away patients’ state rights. The local sheriff was so frustrated in continuing her federal drug policy push because of the protections patients were receiving in criminal court, she and the Board of Supes merely started going after them administratively where they had more control of the deprivation of rights. The Board passed the laws, directs enforcement of their laws, and also sits as an “independent” hearing officer if one asks for review. I’m taking as many as I can to court, but the powers that be here have really stacked the deck. I have my own opinion regarding the proposed initiatives, but frankly, I will vote for any one of them that makes the ballot that will stop the local yahoos from playing demagogue.

  18. Whyiowa4medical on

    I am in a backward state that Keith Stroup does not see legalized until 2020!!! I still say that this is our industry and now that it is an industry, we can fight for it more effectively. Like the computers and places we comment, this was concocted in someone’s garage, or game room over a bowl!!! Not in any boardroom where people who do not even smoke weed are deciding OUR industry!!! What keeps us from moving??? Nothing that I can see as I am creating a canna-business that I will happily allow people in on!!!

  19. MCLR failed for a reason, as did the CCHI; why get behind initiatives that have already demonstrated a lack of support and would only act as a spoiler for a initiative that has the backing of the most prolific cannabis organizations in our country who have already helped with successful legalization initiatives in other states in our union. Open source may work for some applications, but not for a cannabis legalization bill, and twelve pounds of cannabis seems a little out of scale with the medical bill which paved the way for many other states to give access to so many medical users in other states.

  20. What about people who cant get any cannabis at all? Corporate cannabis is better than nothing.

  21. I agree with you, Jon.

    There’s an interview by Russ Belville with Ethan Nadelmann, available on Youtube, in which Ethan says that the corporate monopoly ballot initiative in Ohio is a sign of maturity in the movement—that sooner or later we will have to deal with tough questions posed by corporatism. Nobody likes corporations but it’s inevitable.

    One positive aspect of corporations is that they will likely be a lobbying force to lift the arbitrary small possession limits, and be the largest influence to finally end federal prohibition.

  22. the fact that people LIE when they dont have to, doesnt xactly support your argument. PREVENTATIVE USE! look it up. With the system YOU suggest, many would actually HAVE to lie.

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