Here are 9 points on what that means to you.
If you think, “It means nothing to me”, think again.
Whether you “toke” or “never inhaled”, live in a legal state or not, the massive movement to not only decriminalize, but legalize marijuana across the nation began on December 6, 2012 in Washington State.
Here’s a few points on how I see it may effect you personally:
- A “gold rush” to Washington State and Colorado is to be expected. The business opportunities are a vacuum of need and will bring people to the legalization states who are looking for a fresh start from the past economic downturn.
- The freedom that marijuana legalization implies will bring not only “pot heads” but most importantly, medical refuges seeking treatments to these progressive states ~ and they may be relatives who ask to camp out on your sofa.
- Home values in states that legalize will rise due to the increased population flux needing housing.
- Rents will rise in states that legalize due to increased housing demand.
- A scramble for business space will move commercial rents up in the areas that are approved for cannabis cultivation, processing, distribution and sales.
- Employment rates will go up in states that legalize because these businesses will need to hire workers.
- Criminal charges for under 21 will increase in states that legalize and place under 21 restrictions, like Washington State’s I-502 does. They now have NO DEFENSE for arrests for possession of any amount of marijuana and that younger age group is the most prolific users according to current poles.
- The financial effects on families and possible taint on whether a kid gets accepted to college will linger for a lifetime for young people convicted of marijuana possession.
- Auto insurance rates will go up for those under 21 because they are the high risk group for driving under the influence of marijuana.
These few points will most likely have some effect on you regardless of your personal marijuana use or not!
Some facts on the I-502 law taking effect 12/06/12 in Washington State:
- Adults 21 and over can posses one ounce of marijuana, 16 ounces of products infused with cannabis like pot brownies, or 72 ounces of infused products that include tinctures and creams.
- You can possess the above amounts but it is not yet legal to buy them, grow them or make them for recreational purposes.
- It is not okay to smoke or display anything cannabis in public. They want you to keep it at home; a new twist on “don’t ask, don’t tell”.
- The production and distribution of cannabis products for non-medical use is on hold for at least a year while the rules and regulations are sorted out by the Washington State Liquor Control Board who have at least a year to figure it out. That could stretch further into the future depending on their progress and the potential of butting heads with the Federal Government.
- Only Medical Marijuana Patients (MMJ) are allowed to grow their own in their homes if they choose.
The state has budgeted for the following revenue impact in 2014:
Dedicated Marijuana Fund: $248,639,000
Total State General Fund: $47,418,000
Fingerprint Identification Account: $8,000
Impaired Driver Safety Account: $82,000
Highway Safety Account: $832,000
Federal Grants: – $368,000 (negative)
Marijuana legalization is bound to impact not only your family and mine but the world wide impact is imminent as the United States progresses from the previously dark alley of marijuana to the brighter shadows of the cannabis culture.
Peace and Prosperity,