Tags: marijuana | legalization | dc | poll

Marijuana Legalization Likely to Pass in DC, but Lawmakers Could Delay

By    |   Monday, 13 Oct 2014 02:22 PM

Marijuana legalization is likely to pass next month in Washington, D.C., but now lawmakers are debating delaying the measure until the entire pot industry can be regulated throughout the District.

An estimated 65 percent of voters support the legalization of marijuana in D.C., according to a joint September poll from NBC4, The Washington Post, and Marist. The ballot initiative, Initiative 71, would legalize adult pot use, possession of up to two ounces, and home cultivation of up to six cannabis plants, The Huffington Post reported. Selling marijuana would still be illegal.

"Voters are relating to the message that legalization will end D.C.'s rampant discrimination when it comes marijuana enforcement," Malik Burnett, D.C. policy manager for the Drug Policy Alliance, said in a statement, according to The Post.

But some lawmakers are concerned about legalizing the drug without proper regulation, and wonder whether it might be better to wait until both legalization and sale of the drug are made legal at once.

David Grosso, a D.C. council member, told The Washington Post that he plans to introduce a bill that would give the council a year to establish a possible framework for regulation and taxation of marijuana sales. He said that, if Initiative 71 is approved by voters, the council has the power to postpone its effect until regulatory guidelines can be established.

"I don't want uncertainty to be out there in the streets and in the market, and the initiative as it is written doesn’t give us the certainty we need," Grosso told The Washington Post. "It may be easier to just delay the whole thing while we come up with the regulatory framework."

Under the D.C. Home Rule law, Congress must review all legislation passed by the council before it can become law, creating another hurdle for marijuana legalization in the nation's capital.

"Congress can undo our laws, essentially," Grosso told the National Journal of the marijuana initiative.

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Marijuana legalization is likely to pass next month in Washington, D.C., but now lawmakers are debating delaying the measure until the entire pot industry can be regulated throughout the District.
marijuana, legalization, dc, poll
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2014-22-13
Monday, 13 Oct 2014 02:22 PM
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