California Election Results: Proposition 64 passes, marijuana legalized statewide
The state of California voted yes on Proposition 64, legalizing recreational marijuana use for individuals 21 and older. Marijuana use will now be regulated while sales and cultivation taxes are generated for the state. Studies show that the taxation of marijuana could raise up to $1 billion in revenue annually, creating a huge economic opportunity for California.
Smoking marijuana will be permitted in a private residency or at any business licensed for on-site marijuana consumption. It will remain illegal while driving a vehicle, anywhere smoking tobacco is and in all public places. Individuals will be allowed to grow up to six plants within a private home as long as the area is not visible from a public place. Up to 28.5 grams of marijuana and eight grams of concentrated marijuana are legal to possess. Possession will remain prohibited on school grounds, day care centers or youth centers while children are present.
Individuals serving criminal sentences for activities made legal under the message are considered eligible for re-sentencing. Revenue from the taxes will be deposited in the newly created California Marijuana Tax Fund. The fund is in place to cover the costs of administrating and enforcing the measure, as well as funding drug research and treatment.
Here’s a breakdown of how the funds will be divided:
- $2 million per year to UC San Diego Center for Medical Cannabis Research to further studies
- $10 million per year for 11 years to public California universities to research and evaluate the effects of Proposition 64. This research can lead to policy-change recommendations to the California Legislature and California Governor.
- $3 million annually for five years to the Department of the California Highway Patrol to develop protocols to determine whether a vehicle drive is impaired due to marijuana consumption.
- $10 million, increasing each year by $10 million until reaching $50 million in 2022, for grants to local health departments and community-based nonprofits. This fund will go toward job placement, mental health treatment, substance use disorder treatment, system navigation services, legal services to address barriers to reentry, and linkages to medical care for communities disproportionately affected by past federal and state drug policies.
Leftover revenue will be distributed as follows:
- 60 percent to youth drug education, prevention and treatment programs
- 20 percent to prevent and alleviate environmental damage from illegal marijuana growers
- 20 percent to programs designed to reduce driving under the influence of marijuana and a grant program designed to reduce negative impacts on health or safety resulting from the proposition