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  1. Phungushead
    Organizers of a new Oregon state marijuana legalization initiative campaign, Oregon Cannabis Tax Act 2012 (OCTA 2012), are kicking off their petition drive and opening a new office. The Oregon Secretary of State's Election Division just announced the approval of the petition, Initiative Number 9, for circulation and signature gathering on March 24.

    Initiative organizers will have until July 7, 2012 to gather 90,000 registered Oregon voters' signatures to qualify for the November 6, 2012 ballot.

    Petitioners rallied at their new office in Portland starting at 9:30 a.m. on Monday, March 28 and held a news conference at 10 a.m. The state campaign committee is working to achieve ballot status in three ways: hiring paid petitioners, organizing volunteer petitioners and soliciting Oregon registered voters' signatures online.

    The Oregon Cannabis Tax Act of 2012 would regulate the legal sale of marijuana to adults through state-licensed stores, allow adults to grow their own, license Oregon farmers to grow marijuana for state-licensed stores and allow unlicensed Oregon farmers to grow cannabis hemp for fuel, fiber and food.

    OCTA 2012 will raise $140 million a year by taxing commercial cannabis sales to adults 21 years of age and older, and save an estimated $61.5 million as law enforcement, corrections and judicial attention can focus on violent crimes and theft.

    Initiative organizers estimate that this will amount to $200 million a year more funding for state government. Of those proceeds, 90 percent will go into the state general fund, seven percent will go to drug treatment programs, and one percent each for drug education in public schools and two new state commissions to promote hemp biofuel and hemp fiber and food.

    OCTA 2012 is also announcing a series of three benefit concerts featuring reggae music legends, Toots & The Maytals on Independence Day weekend. Toots & The Maytals will headline three shows, starting at the Lane County Fairgrounds in Eugene on Saturday, July 2, then the Deschutes County Fairgrounds in Redmond on Sunday, July 3, and culminating at the Washington Park Rose Garden Amphitheater in Portland on Monday, July 4.

    Toots & The Maytals' first Jamaican hit recortd, "Do The Reggae" from 1966, named the new music genre and their music was featured in the 1972 cult movie classic, The Harder They Come. Toots has recorded with many other headliners, and his recent album, True Love, features duets with Willie Nelson, Bonnie Raitt, Keith Richards, Eric Clapton, Ben Harper, No Doubt and more.

    True Love won the Grammy Award for Best Reggae Album of 2005. Toots & The Maytals hold the current record for #1 hits in Jamaica, with a total of 31.

    The Independence Day Benefit will be the first show at Portland's Washington Park Rose Garden Amphitheater since Ziggy Marley played there 12 years ago.

    Monday, March 28, 2011, at 1:20 pm

    By Steve Elliott

    OCTA 2012 Text:


  1. Terrapinzflyer
    Push to sell marijuana in Oregon kicks off

    PORTLAND, Ore. – A new push to sell marijuana in stores kicked off in Oregon Monday.

    If supporters can get the initiative on the ballot and approved by voters, it would allow any adult over 21 to buy pot at a state licensed store or grow it in Oregon.

    Supporters of the idea say it would generate hundreds of millions of dollars for the state each year.

    Chief petitioner, Paul Stanford, has been leading the effort to legalize marijuana in Oregon since 1984. This time he said he thinks even the name of the measure will get people to pay attention: “The Oregon Cannabis Tax Act.”

    To get the measure on the November 2012 ballot, supporters need to collect 90,000 signatures by July 2012.

    The campaign’s manager, Jennifer Alexander, was working to collect signatures near the Lloyd Center Monday.

    “I understand some of the arguments against marijuana, but I don’t think any of them justify locking up people and wasting all the money that we do enforcing prohibition,” Alexander said.

    “Saving taxpayers’ money is at the heart of the strategy this time and to some it’s an argument that works.

    “If you legalize it, you save money on police making arrests on petty crimes like that,” said John Hall.

    Stanford said polls show most people on the West Coast support legalizing pot.

    “There’s a big sea change. There’ve been polls by Zogby and other organizations,” he said.

    Next year, Washington, Oregon and California may have marijuana measures on the ballot. Supporters say legalization would raise $140 million in taxes for Oregon and save $60 million in law enforcement costs.

    But not everyone is lining up to sign up.

    Adina Tudorache said she worries that legalizing pot would put more dangerous drivers on the road.

    “I actually had a cousin who almost died because someone was high driving, and he was riding his bike,” she said. “So I definitely don’t think that’s a good idea.”

    By Susan Harding KATU News and KATU.com Staff

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