Thursday, February 08, 2018

Cardenas and Clodfelter Introduce Bipartisan Legislation to Allow Voters to Decide the Legalization of Marijuana

Feb. 8, 2018
Contact: Robbie Sherwood

PHOENIX, State Capitol – Recreational marijuana use for those 21 and older may become legalized in the State of Arizona with legislation announced today.

Rep. Mark Cardenas, D-Phoenix (District 19), and Rep.Todd Clodfelter, R-Tucson (District 10), introduced House Concurrent Resolution 2037 that sends a ballot measure to voters that would allow legalized marijuana of one ounce or less for personal use and allows for the cultivation of not more than six marijuana plants in the State of Arizona.

This resolution prohibits the consumption of marijuana in public and does not allow users to drive under the influence. This legislation also establishes an excise tax on the sale or transfer of marijuana.

"The voters sent us here to do our job. They have clearly indicated that they want society to move toward the acceptance of marijuana. In other states, it's paying for the rule assessment of hospitals, schools, roads, and we need that funding here," Cardenas said.

This legislation provides regulations for businesses that sell marijuana and includes requirements for applications to operate a marijuana business. However, it does not prohibit employers' ability to have policies restricting the use of marijuana by employees.

This legislation allows local government to prohibit the operation of marijuana businesses in their communities and does not limit the rights of medical marijuana patients and dispensaries under the Medical Marijuana Act.

According to Clodfelter, "I believe that marijuana legalization is an eventuality in Arizona. As a Legislature, we need to decide if we want that effort imposed through a potentially poorly-crafted initiative or if we want to help write a law where we can fully vet each measure, weigh feedback from stakeholders, and build flexibility into the system in case changes are needed. The voters will ultimately have the final say on our legislation and will be better served by legislative involvement on this issue.”

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