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The Vote For Marijuana: Signatures Could Put It on the Ballot

JACKSON, Miss–  It’s the proposal to legalize marijuana–ballot initiative 48–and the petition is going around now. If it’s successful, it would legalize and decriminalize cannabis and industrial hemp. That means medical marijuana, recreational marijuana, farming marijuana in Mississippi. Anyone over 21 would be able to purchase it.

“It would be regulated just like alcohol,” says Kelly Jacobs, author and sponsor of the proposal, “with a seven percent tax for recreational cannabis.”

That seven percent tax would go to the public school system in the state until 2020, when the collections then go into the general fund. Jacobs says cities would also charge a fee for the growth and sale of marijuana, which could boost the economy. Medically used cannabis and industrial hemp would be tax exempt.

But the proposal isn’t about just making cannabis legal for the future. It’s about decriminalizing the drug even for those already facing time.

“We would ask, because we believe it never should have been illegal in the first place,” says Jacobs, “that the governor pardon anyone serving time on non-violent cannabis convictions.”

A main concern from people against marijuana is the impairment that comes from being high. Jacobs says the impairment isn’t as significant as impairment from alcohol.

“There is no Mothers Against Cannabis Smokers around,” says Jacobs, “we don’t hear of people dying from driving and smoking cannabis.”

The next step is getting over 107,000 on the petitions by July 2015 in order for the ballot to be in the 2016 elections.

Here’s the whole interview with Jacobs:

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