The Arizona Supreme Court gave the okay for the decision on whether or not to legalize marijuana to appear on the November ballot. It rejected the challenge to the Smart and Safe Act. This ensures that questions about marijuana can appear on the November ballot. It will be labeled as Proposition 207. It’s up to the voters to decide whether or not the initiative is good or bad.
The Smart and Safe Arizona Act would permit those 21+ to possess an ounce of pot and set up a system for retailers to sell it. It was unclear whether or not the 12 percent excise tax would be placed on the sale of marijuana. This tax is used for funds for infrastructure, public service and community colleges. The proposal to legalize marijuana in Arizona failed at the polls four years ago, but it is expected to get a better reception this time around. A spokeswoman for the Smart and Safe Campaign, Stacy Pearson, stated that its citizens are more than ready to stop arresting people for low-level drug offenses. It was a stroke of luck that this initiative even got passes, as Governor Doug Ducey openly fought against legalizing marijuana in the past and other opponents of marijuana legalization had filed a lawsuit against the Safe and Smart Arizona initiative to keep it off the ballot in November 2020.
However, 420,000 signatures from activists turned in enough petitions to counter it. “The opponents said initiative backers used illegal and unconstitutional “bait-and-switch tactics” and that the initiative violates Arizona’s statutes in three ways. They include a misleading 100-word summary that leaves out important provisions, an “incoherent” text and title that obscures the extent of its impact on other laws, and a failure to provide a legal funding mechanism.” But, in the end, it didn’t hold any weight.
Under the new measure, adults could cultivate up to six marijuana plants for personal use and possess up to an ounce of pot. The initiative also has several restorative justice provisions. It allows for those with prior marijuana convictions to have their record expunged and establish a social equity ownership program. The Department of Health Services would be responsible for issuing marijuana business licenses.
Most people feel that November 2020 will be a good day in Arizona for those who want to end marijuana prohibition in the state of Arizona. Many feel it’s been a long time coming.