The Alaska Marijuana Control Board has issued its second round of proposed rules, and Alaskans are invited to comment by 4:30 p.m., Saturday, August 8. Please take a look at the proposal, available here, which provides extensive rules for licensed businesses. While most of the proposed rules offer reasonable regulations, several would clearly violate important protections established under Measure 2.
For instance, Measure 2 allows local governments to craft ordinances that local marijuana businesses must comply with. The current version of the rules goes further, allowing local governments to “protest” individual businesses' applications — which could block them from proceeding. Local governments could also establish unique conditions for particular applicants. Neither provision is consistent with Measure 2.
The board also unfairly tries to expand its own authority to deny licenses and imposes several other restrictions that simply don’t exist under Measure 2. For a more in-depth analysis of the proposed rules, take a look at our draft letter to the board here. We encourage you to submit your own letter, and please feel free to use ours as a guide. Or,simply click here and send comments to board members immediately.
On Nov. 4, 53% of Alaska voters approved Measure 2 to legalize and regulate the cultivation, possession, and sale of marijuana in Alaska. Tomorrow, the Fairbanks North Star Borough Assembly, City of Fairbanks, and City of North Pole city councils will hold a special public forum to discuss potential marijuana regulations at the local level.
Local governments have authority under Measure 2 to impose reasonable regulations, such as limitations on business hours and zoning. If you are a Fairbanks North Star area resident, please let your local elected representatives know you appreciate them taking this new law seriously and expect sensible regulations.
Please attend the hearing and testify in favor of allowing licensed cultivation centers and retail stores to do business.
Tuesday, December 2, 2014
Pioneer Park Civic Center
2300 Airport Road
Comments are limited to three minutes. Here are suggested talking points to incorporate into your testimony:
- Thank you for being proactive, and inviting input from the public.
- It is early in the process, but deliberate and thoughtful rulemaking is appreciated.
- Reasonable regulations should protect public safety, but also allow the industry to exist.
- Local lawmakers should continue studying to prepare for this new industry.
Nearly 60% of voters in the Fairbanks North Star Borough voted for Measure 2. Make sure elected officials hear from that sensible majority.
The state of Alaska stands to gain $23 million in annual tax revenues from a fully legal marijuana market, according to a report released this week by the Marijuana Policy Group — a research organization that does not take a stance on issues associated with making marijuana legal.
The report estimates that the total sales from a legal marijuana market would generate $56 million in 2016 and would climb to $107 million in 2020, if Alaska’s resident voters approve Measure 2 on the ballot next week.
The report was conducted by the same non-partisan group of academics and private researchers that provided the legal marijuana market estimates to Colorado upon the passing of Amendment 64. It now aims to apply the lessons learned from Colorado to Alaska.
Moreover, based on data from the National Survey on Drug Use and Health, the report estimates that there are 103,000 marijuana users above the age of 21 in Alaska, representing at least one-fifth of the state’s adult population. It is reasonable to think that a multi-million dollar legal marijuana market will take the place of the illicit market in years to come.
The Alaska and Oregon ballot initiatives to make marijuana legal in both states will be voted on a week from today. With the important election just another week away, here is an overview of the existing and pending legislation in each state:
In Alaska, laws eliminating criminal penalties and replacing them with civil penalties already exist for the possession of up to four ounces of marijuana. Moreover, the state has already implemented a medical marijuana program. In the upcoming election, the state will vote on Measure 2, which would establish a recreational marijuana market that would allow marijuana to be taxed and regulated similarly to alcohol.
In Oregon, the elimination of criminal penalties associated with the possession of up to an ounce of marijuana was established over 40 years ago. In addition, the Oregon Medical Marijuana Program has been in place since November 1998. In the upcoming election, resident voters will be deciding on Measure 91, which serves to establish a legal adult marijuana market that would allow marijuana to be taxed and regulated similarly to alcohol. If the measure passes, Oregon residents will be allowed to possess up to eight ounces of marijuana at home, while being able to cultivate up to four plants. Moreover, retail sales for adults over the age of 21 would be permitted.
In the end, marijuana prohibition has failed, and it is time for a more sensible approach. Alaska and Oregon voters, please take a stand on November 4 to make marijuana legal in your states. Encourage family, friends, and neighbors to do the same!