County Board Okays Pot Referendum
Hope is that advisory referendum will push state legislators to act.
There will be a Nov. 6 advisory referendum on marijuana legalization in Milwaukee County.
The County Board voted, 15-1, Thursday to approve the referendum. The lone vote against it came from Supervisor Patti Logsdon, who had voted in favor when the referendum was before the Judiciary, Legislation and General Services Committee. Logsdon said she decided to change her vote after hearing from constituents.
The referendum question will ask, “Do you favor allowing adults 21 years of age and older to engage in the personal use of marijuana, while also regulating commercial marijuana-related activities, and imposing a tax on the sale of marijuana?”
County Supervisor John Weishan, Jr., the original sponsor of the measure, said during Thursday’s meeting that a referendum could prod the Legislature to take action on recreational and medical marijuana issues.
“We need to get them moving on those things today,” he said.
Supervisory Anthony Staskunas said he was not totally sold on the idea of legal recreational marijuana, but said that “it’s shameful” that a few state senators and representatives “have stood in the door and refused to allow medical marijuana to come to a vote in the State Legislature.”
Staskunas said he has a friend with a serious disease who gets relief from cannabis. He said he resented “that a very small group of legislators are turning” his friend “into a criminal.”
“In the meantime…there’s certainly nothing wrong with allowing the people of Milwaukee County to have their voice on this,” he said.
Supervisor Supreme Moore Omokunde supported the referendum and predicted nationwide cannabis legalization within five years. Moore Omokunde said he will be bringing forth legislation to expunge old marijuana offenses from criminal records.
Without expungement, he said, “There will be rich white men make their millions” while black men remain locked up for marijuana offenses.
Gretchen Schuldt writes a blog for Wisconsin Justice Initiative, whose mission is “To improve the quality of justice in Wisconsin by educating the public about legal issues and encouraging civic engagement in and debate about the judicial system and its operation.
- A Day to Consider Legalizing Pot - Isiah Holmes - Apr 20th, 2020
- New ACLU Report: Black People Four Times More Likely to Get Arrested for Marijuana Possession in Wisconsin - American Civil Liberties Union of Wisconsin - Apr 20th, 2020
- ‘When, Not If’ Medical Marijuana Is Legalized - Corri Hess - Feb 4th, 2020
- State Residents Cross Border for Legal Pot - Corri Hess - Jan 3rd, 2020
- GOP Bill Legalizes Medical Marijuana - Shawn Johnson - Dec 11th, 2019
- The Cannabis Question: More People Using Pot as Medicine - Shayli Kipnis - Nov 9th, 2019
- The Cannabis Question: Bill Eases Burdens On Pot Offenders - Natalie Yahr - Nov 6th, 2019
- The Cannabis Question: Pot Possession Charges Cause Big Problems - Natalie Yahr - Nov 2nd, 2019
- Bill Would Decriminalize Pot Possession - Laurel White - Oct 30th, 2019
- Senator Larson Continues to Support Legalization and Decriminalization of Marijuana - State Sen. Chris Larson - Oct 30th, 2019
Read more about Legalizing of Marijuana here