California has always been America’s trailblazer, setting trends in fashion, pop culture, politics, and lifestyles. In 1996 California took the lead to legalize medical marijuana. This coming November 8, in addition to voting to decide who the new president will be, California along with 7 other states, will vote on ballot title, California Marijuana Legalization Initiative, Proposition 64 (2016), or (AMUA) The Adult Use of Marijuana Act. The proposal is a complicated and very lengthy action to legalize recreational marijuana. Included in its various provisions, it will make legal for adults 21 and older to purchase and possess up to one ounce of marijuana and grow up to six plants for personal use without the fear of local, state, or federal prosecution. canorml.org. The ballot is also qualified to set up different kinds of licenses for growers and retail businesses.
Recreational use of marijuana is currently legal in Colorado, Washington, Washington D.C., Oregon and Alaska. Many of California’s high-profile names are using their celebrity fame to urge fans to get out the legalization vote.
If California does pass AUMA, because of California’s substantial size, huge population, and diverse demographics, California has the magnitude and influence to help sway the rest of the nation to seriously consider ending the federal ban on legalizing marijuana.
California’s existing medical marijuana dispensary system is massive.Having this foundation in place prior to approval would make it extremely easy for California to allow these dispensaries to begin selling marijuana for recreational purposes.
The weighty arguments to legalize rests with job creation in the growing, processing, selling, and financing segments, the increase in tax revenue, plus the possible long range decimation of the drug cartels. In banking, though banks in general tend to avoid marijuana based businesses for fear of federal prosecution, since federal legalization is what matters most to investors, if the AUMA initiative continues to pass state by state, it can pave an eventual path for the marijuana dispensary industry to be registered as legitimate in all facets of doing business.