Earlier in the week we outlined the marijuana initiatives on the Missouri ballot this year in Missouri has five ballot initiatives for marijuana in 2016. Out of those five, there was only one we recommended voting against. That one was the Constitutional Amendment to Article XV, Relating to Legalizing Marijuana for Medical Purposes 2016-128 proposed by Brad Bradshaw.
Missouri State Rep. Tommie Pierson (D-North St. Louis County) has gone a step further. Today he published an OpEd in the Missouri Times titled The Missouri Legislature Must Not Let Brad Bradshaw Hijack Medical Cannabis to Create Constitutional Oligopolies and Grow Government. It turns out the exorbitant tax on medicine is not the only problem with this proposal.
According to Rep. Pierson, who is pro-legalization, this initiative would set up a constitutionally protected monopoly much in the same way that Ohio's Issue 3 tried to do. The voters rejected it in Ohio, but Missouri's version has no mention of those details in the ballot summary.
Rep. Pierson wrote his own summary of the bill which includes the main problems with it:
- This legislation threatens private property owners by creating a Constitutional regime for eminent domain takings
- This legislation would create a Constitutional oligopoly where ordinary Missourians would find it virtually impossible to start businesses, deploy capital investments, or enter the cannabis industry
- This legislation creates a new state agency with a dedicated revenue stream controlled by the office of the Lieutenant Governor and without any accountability from any other branch of government
- This legislation taxes medical cannabis at 85% [75% tax on the retail sale of marijuana, and a 10% tax on the wholesale sale of marijuana to licensed facilities]
We will have several other better options on the ballot this November. Please vote no on just this one.
By Meric Ackerman - The Examiner/Jan. 28, 2016
Dear Drugs-Forum readers: We are a small non-profit that runs one of the most read drug information & addiction help websites in the world. We serve over 4 million readers per month, and have costs like all popular websites: servers, hosting, licenses and software. To protect our independence we do not run ads. We take no government funds. We run on donations which average $25. If everyone reading this would donate $5 then this fund raiser would be done in an hour. If Drugs-Forum is useful to you, take one minute to keep it online another year by donating whatever you can today. Donations are currently not sufficient to pay our bills and keep the site up. Your help is most welcome. Thank you.
Missouri's 2016-128 Ballot Initiative Bad for the Marijuana Legalization Movement