As our newly elected Wisconsin State Senators and Assembly Representatives take their oath of office and begin their legislative cycle we need to keep marijuana reform on the agenda throughout the process. The first step of a new legislative cycle is communication from you, the constituent.
As a resident of Wisconsin, I demand that our state lawmakers move swiftly to end the failed policy of marijuana prohibition and criminalization.
Never in modern history has there existed greater public support for ending the nation’s nearly century-long experiment with marijuana prohibition. The 2021-22 legislative session will be crucial for state lawmakers to make marijuana law reform a priority.
The continued criminalization of adult marijuana use is out of step with the views of adults throughout America. Support for legalization of marijuana is at an all-time high; 78% of votes on the cannabis referenda in the 2018 general election supported legalized and regulated production and sales of marijuana.
The ongoing enforcement of cannabis prohibition financially burdens taxpayers, encroaches upon civil liberties, engenders disrespect for the law, impedes legitimate scientific research into the plant’s medicinal properties, and disproportionately impacts communities of color.
It is time for state lawmakers to acknowledge this reality. It is time to stop ceding control of the marijuana market to untaxed criminal enterprises, and for lawmakers to implement common-sense regulations governing cannabis’ personal use by adults and licensing its production.
Advisory referendums on marijuana in Wisconsin were on the ballots in 16 counties and two cities, and although they were non-binding, all of them were overwhelmingly approved by voters. The time is now for Wisconsin to reform our marijuana laws.
We also request key Senate and Assembly allies to form the first-ever Wisconsin Cannabis Caucus to develop and promote sensible cannabis policy reform and work to reform state cannabis laws under a bipartisan nature.
As a constituent, I urge you to make the following issues priorities when considering reforming hemp cannabis/marijuana laws in Wisconsin:
Decriminalize personal possession of marijuana. Replace criminal violations with civil violations (Fines not Crimes!) Since Michigan is now an adult useage state with limits of 2.5 ounces of personal marijuana and transfers to adults 21 and older (including out of state residents) we recommend that the state of Wisconsin decriminalizes personal possession of cannabis in Wisconsin to 2.5 ounces (70 grams) of marijuana.
Remove the felony provision for personal possession of subsequent offenses. Personal possession of cannabis is medically legal in 30+ states and recreational/adult use is legal in 10 states. This is a plant, and no one in Wisconsin deserves a felony for possessing a plant substance that a majority of United States citizens can purchase legally. Create a program for expungement.
Establish a medical marijuana program allowing: a) smoking and eating cannabis. b) patients the ability to grow/cultivate their own plants or designate caregivers to do it for them. c) a structure for municipalities to govern commercial medical marijuana facilities and farmers markets. d) reciprocity with other medical marijuana states.
Establish a recreational / adult / personal use program for adults 21 years or older. This is where the state licenses, regulates and taxes commercial adult use of cannabis, including cultivation and sales.