Washington DC to Vote On Marijuana Legalization

Washington DC to Vote On Marijuana Legalization4It’s official—voters in our nation’s capital will decide on marijuana legalization this November. Even though this vote doesn’t include the ability to sell weed, it does include the right to cultivate!

Yesterday, the District of Columbia Board of Elections unanimously voted to put on the ballot Initiative 71, a measure that would legalize adult possession and use of up to two ounces of cannabis as well as home cultivation of up to six marijuana plants for personal use.

According to the Huff Post, while the sale and use of paraphernalia would be legalized under the measure, sale of marijuana would still be prohibited because current law bars D.C. voters from approving cannabis sales via ballot initiative. The D.C. Council, however, is considering a separate bill that would allow for the regulation and taxation of marijuana in the District.

Washington DC to Vote On Marijuana Legalization“District law prevents ballot initiatives from addressing the sale of marijuana. However, the D.C. Council is currently considering a bill—proposed by Councilmember David Grosso (I-At Large)—that will tax and regulate marijuana within the District.” Dr. Malik Burnett—a local organizer with the Drug Policy Alliance—says that the Campaign “[thinks] that the Council should [take] this as an opportunity to provide responsive regulations,” if the ballot initiative should get enough votes to pass.

“It is clear from the number of signatures the campaign was able to submit that citizens want a major change in D.C.’s marijuana laws,” said Malik Burnett, D.C. policy manager for the Drug Policy Alliance, in a statement. “The policies of prohibition in the District have been borne on the backs of people of color for decades; District residents can put an end to this discrimination.”

Washington DC to Vote On Marijuana LegalizationThe new legalization initiative builds on recent moves to remove restrictions on access and use of marijuana in Washington, D.C. The District’s first medical marijuana dispensary opened last year, and earlier this year, the D.C. Council decriminalized the possession of an ounce or less of marijuana.

And the good news doesn’t stop—voters in three other states will also decide on new marijuana laws in November. Oregon and Alaska voters will decide on the legalization of recreational marijuana and voters in Florida will decide on a medical marijuana ballot measure.

Will you be voting yes on weed this November? Let us know in the comments below…

*Ballot photo: DCist

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