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Petition drive to legalize pot in Michigan to launch

marijuana leaves
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A petition campaign wants to allow marijuana retailers in Michigan communities that will permit it, and for people to grow their own at home. The campaign has submitted its petition for approval by a state elections board.

Jeff Irwin is the campaign’s political director. He says the proposal would regulate recreational marijuana using a system similar to the one for selling beer, wine, and alcohol. He says outlawing pot has been a failure.

“We have a much better chance of improving public safety by breaking the black market. We have a much better chance of making sure that trade in marijuana happens in the appropriate time, manner, and place, so it’s not disrupting neighborhoods, and we also we have a chance to grow our economy.”

The proposal would levy taxes on marijuana totaling 16% of retail sales. Irwin says that would generate hundreds of millions of dollars for schools, roads, and local governments. 

Rick Pluta is Senior Capitol Correspondent for the Michigan Public Radio Network. He has been covering Michigan’s Capitol, government, and politics since 1987.
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