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  1. Alfa
    MARIJUANA REFORM TO TAP GRASSROOTS

    A Bumper Crop of Initiatives Addressing Marijuana Policy and Enforcement
    Will Appear on Various State and Municipal Ballots.

    Few domestic policy issues enjoy such deep-rooted public support as
    marijuana law reform; in particular the legalization of medicinal pot for
    seriously ill patients. Yet despite nationwide polls indicating that some
    eight in 10 Americans back reform, politicians at the state and especially
    federal level continue to oppose even minor changes in existing policy, as
    evident by Congress' refusal to hold hearings on a pair of proposed bills
    seeking to exempt state-authorized medical marijuana patients from federal
    arrest and prosecution.

    As a result of this chasm between the public and their elected officials
    regarding pot policy, proponents of reform have in recent years taken the
    issue directly to the voters via statewide and local ballot initiatives -
    most notably, passing laws in Alaska, California, Colorado, Maine, Nevada,
    Oregon and Washington exempting qualified patients from criminal
    prosecution for the possession and use of medicinal marijuana when such use
    is recommended by their physicians.

    This November's presidential election will be no exception, as a bumper
    crop of initiatives addressing marijuana policy and enforcement will appear
    on various state and municipal ballots. Below is a summary of the more
    prominent marijuana law reform proposals.

    Statewide Initiatives

    Alaska - If approved, Alaska's Cannabis Decriminalization and Regulation
    Act ( color=#0000ffhttp://www.alaskahemp.org/ ) would mandate that "persons 21 years or
    older shall not be prosecuted, be denied any right or privilege, nor be
    subject to criminal or civil penalties for the possession, cultivation,
    distribution, or consumption" of marijuana for medicinal, industrial or
    recreational purposes. The proposal also encourages the state legislature
    to establish a system to regulate pot "in a manner similar to alcohol or
    tobacco."

    INITIATIVE STATUS: Campaigners have qualified the Cannabis
    Decriminalization and Regulation Act for the Nov. 2, 2004 ballot.

    Montana - Like Arkansas' proposed measure,
    the Montana Medical Marijuana
    Act (I-148) ( color=#0000ffhttp://www.montanacares.org/ ), if approved, would allow
    qualified patients to possess and cultivate marijuana for medicinal
    purposes under the authorization of their physician. Patients diagnosed
    with cancer, glaucoma and HIV/AIDS qualify for legal protection under this
    act, as well as individuals suffering from cachexia, severe pain, nausea,
    epileptic seizures, persistent muscle spasms, multiple sclerosis or Crohn's
    disease. The proposal also establishes a confidential state-run patient
    registry to issue identification cards to qualifying patients.

    INITIATIVE STATUS: Campaigners have qualified the Montana Medical Marijuana
    Act for the Nov. 2, 2004 ballot.

    Nevada - If approved, the Regulation of Marijuana Amendment (
    color=#0000ffhttp://www.regulatemarijuana.org ) would remove criminal and civil
    penalties for "the use or possession of one ounce or less of marijuana by a
    person who has attained the age of 21 years," and direct the state
    legislature to "provide by law for a system of regulation for the
    cultivation, distribution, sale, and taxation of marijuana."

    INITIATIVE STATUS: Campaigners failed to turn in enough valid signatures to
    qualify the Regulation of Marijuana Amendment for the Nov. 2, 2004 ballot.
    Petitioners are presently challenging the Secretary of State's vote count.

    Oregon - The Oregon Medical Marijuana Act (aka OMMA2) (
    color=#0000ffhttp://www.yeson33.org ) seeks to amend the state's existing medicinal
    marijuana law to allow qualified patients to legally possess up to ten
    marijuana plants at any one time and one pound of usable marijuana. The
    proposal would also allow state-certified nurse practitioners and
    naturopaths to recommend marijuana to their patients, and expand the
    definition of a qualifying medical condition to include "any other medical
    condition for which, in the determination of the attending physician, the
    medical use of marijuana would be beneficial." The proposal also mandates
    the state legislature to promulgate rules to license and regulate medical
    cannabis dispensaries "to ensure that medical marijuana is available to
    qualified patients."

    INITIATIVE STATUS: Campaigners have qualified the Oregon Medical Marijuana
    Act for the Nov. 2, 2004 ballot.

    Local Initiatives

    Oakland, California - If approved, the Oakland Cannabis Regulation and
    Revenue Ordinance ( color=#0000ffhttp://www.yesonz.org/ ) would establish new municipal
    guidelines directing the Oakland Police Department to make the enforcement
    of minor marijuana offenses by adults the city's "lowest law enforcement
    priority." The proposal also mandates the city of Oakland "to tax and
    regulate the sale of cannabis for adult use, so as to keep it off the
    streets and away from children and to raise revenue for the city, as soon
    as possible under state law."

    INITIATIVE STATUS: Campaigners have qualified the Oakland Cannabis
    Regulation and Revenue Ordinance for the Nov. 2, 2004 ballot.

    Tallahassee, Florida - The Practical Law Enforcement Amendment (aka the
    PLEA) seeks to amend the Tallahassee city charter to mandate Tallahassee
    Police Department to make the "investigation, arrest and prosecution of
    marijuana offenses [involving possession of under 20 grams], ... the city's
    lowest law enforcement priority."

    INITIATIVE STATUS: Campaigners are still awaiting a final announcement from
    city election officials regarding whether the Practical Law Enforcement
    Amendment has qualified for the Nov. 2, 2004 ballot.

    Ann Arbor, Michigan - If approved, the Ann Arbor Medical Marijuana Act (
    color=#0000ffhttp://www.aammi.org/ ) would amend the Ann Arbor city charter to allow
    qualified patients to possess and cultivate marijuana for medicinal
    purposes under the authorization of their physician. The proposal would
    mandate "no incarceration, probation, nor any other punitive or
    rehabilitative measure" for qualified patients, and establish an
    "affirmative defense to prosecution" when marijuana is possessed for
    medicinal purposes.

    INITIATIVE STATUS: Campaigners have qualified the Ann Arbor Medical
    Marijuana Act for the Nov. 2, 2004 ballot.

    Detroit, Michigan - The Detroit Medical Marijuana Act (Proposal M) seeks to
    amend the Detroit city criminal code so that local criminal penalties no
    longer apply to any individual "possessing or using marijuana under the
    direction, prescription, supervision, or guidance of a physician or other
    licensed health professional." The proposal also eliminates criminal
    penalties on the use and possession of marijuana-associated paraphernalia
    devices by qualified patients.

    INITIATIVE STATUS: Sixty percent of city residents voted Aug. 3, 2004 in
    favor of Proposition M, The Detroit Medical Marijuana Act.

    Minneapolis, Minnesota - If approved, the Minneapolis City Charter
    Amendment ( color=#0000ffhttp://www.cohr.org/ ) would amend the Minneapolis city charter
    "to require that the City Council shall authorize, license, and regulate a
    reasonable number of medicinal marijuana distribution centers in the city
    of Minneapolis as is necessary to provide services to patients who have
    been recommended medicinal marijuana by a medical or osteopathic doctor
    licensed to practice in the state of Minnesota to the extent permitted by
    state and federal law."

    INITIATIVE STATUS: The Minneapolis City Council has refused to place the
    Minneapolis City Charter Amendment on the Nov. 2, 2004 ballot - arguing
    that the proposal fails "to relate to the general governance of the city."
    Petitioners have announced plans to legally challenge the Council's decision.

    Columbia, Missouri - Columbia voters will decide on a pair of initiatives
    this November: the Missouri Smart Sentencing Initiative, and the Missouri
    Medical Marijuana Initiative. If approved, the Missouri Smart Sentencing
    Initiative would amend the Columbia city criminal code to reduce
    misdemeanor penalties on the possession of marijuana and/or paraphernalia
    to a fine-only offense of $250. The Missouri Medical Marijuana Initiative
    would amend the Columbia city criminal code so that "adults who obtain and
    use marijuana and/or marijuana paraphernalia for medical purposes pursuant
    to the recommendation of a physician shall not be subject to any arrest,
    prosecution, punishment, or sanction." Both proposals mandate that all
    cases involving either the misdemeanor possession of marijuana or the
    medicinal use of cannabis be referred only to the Municipal Prosecuting
    Attorney.

    INITIATIVE STATUS: Campaigners have qualified the Missouri Smart Sentencing
    Initiative and the Missouri Medical Marijuana Initiative for the Nov. 2,
    2004 ballot.

Comments

  1. OccularFantasm
    Re: MARIJUANA REFORM TO TAP GRASSROOTS

    Very interesting and good to hear. I don't have extensive political knowhow, but initiatives are made by the people if memory serves. How do the people go about getting these reforms on the ballot? Where swim lives most of the state and local officials oppose marijuana reform without so much as a consideration, yet the majority of the public tolks up. I was wondering if anyone knew how exactly one could go about setting up such an initiative. I feel there are many people who feel this way, yet don't know much of anything about the current "political" system. Thanks.
  2. FuBai
    You need to get a petition of x number of signatures to start an initiative at state level. There have been some political machinations over federal level initiatives and I don't think any of them have taken place at that level, although there was something about Mike Gravel finding a way to get a federal initiative going without congressional approval.
  3. OccularFantasm
    Re: MARIJUANA REFORM TO TAP GRASSROOTS

    Thanks, that was pretty vital information to my plan. Do you know if the x, the number of signatures needed, is a constant number, a coefficient of the current population, or if there is a website somewhere that would have this type of information.

    Also, this has been festering in my head for a while. There are many groups such as the something for sensible drug policy, MAPS, and NORML, among others, which advocate the legalization of marijuana and support reform of its current legislature. Do you happen to know if for example a local initiative were to be founded, if it would have the ability to gain support form such groups. It seems as if the people fighting for this are somewhat separated, and perhaps if there was a way to connect them all something greater could be done.


    This question has more to do with this forum as a whole. I do not know if drugs-forum.com has any affiliates or sister-sites or anything of the such. If it does, and they are perhaps related somehow, perhaps such measures as this could be combined somehow. If such a thing does not exist, or is inadvisable for some reason, forget I even asked.

    Also, totally unrelated but, couldn't we (well, the site) get funding of some sort form one of those pro-reform or psychoactive application groups. I mean ya have to figure this site is basically a place where individuals can come and discuss drugs, myths surrounding them, applications, legalities and consequences, without the interference of big media. It seems that would be in the best interest of those groups anyway, and would provide the site with additional (and from what I hear much needed) resources. I don't know anything in those type of regards with this site, and for all I know we already are, but it just seemed like a good idea and I'd be remiss if I didn't mention it. Thanks again.
  4. OccularFantasm
    Re: MARIJUANA REFORM TO TAP GRASSROOTS

    Another thought came to mind. Would it be better to start a new thread for people who want to be active in this way, but are not sure how or what to do. It just seems most of the proponents just don't have enough time to spend searching through places to find a way to be helpful, especially for a moral cause that won't help pay the bills, or invade the precious downtime. I think if this were done it may help make people who feel obliged to help but lack the time or knowhow an opportunity to do more. If this contradicts the site, or any rules, I'll do no such thing, but I'm pretty sure it would be in accordance with the rules. Just bein safe. Thanks, -OccularFantasm
  5. Heretic.Ape.
  6. OccularFantasm
    Re: MARIJUANA REFORM TO TAP GRASSROOTS

    Thats exactly the lines I was thinking about, thanks. I'll read all that stuff then do, well something, I'll probably have a better idea once I've finished reading it. I don't know why i didn't just do a search for such things, in retrospect it seems like common sense.
  7. x cynic x
    Re: MARIJUANA REFORM TO TAP GRASSROOTS

    So I might be movin to Alaska when I get older if this goes through
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