Pubdate: Thu, 24 Apr 2014
Source: Las Vegas Review-Journal (NV)
Copyright: 2014 Las Vegas Review-Journal
Author: Sean Whaley
Page: 1B


CARSON CITY - A pro-marijuana group filed a petition Wednesday to 
start the process of legalizing the recreational use of marijuana in Nevada.

The decision probably will be decided by voters in 2016 if the group 
can gather the requisite number of signatures.

The initiative petition was filed in the Las Vegas office of the 
secretary of state by Joe Brezny, executive director of the Nevada 
Cannabis Industry Association.

Supporters must collect 101,667 signatures by Nov. 11 to put a 
petition to change a state law on the ballot in 2016. If they do,

"Our proposal preserves the medical marijuana laws exactly as they 
are," Brezny said. "Patients will be protected. But it expands the 
sale of cannabis to adults over age 21. There is a 1-ounce limit."

Internal polling from 2013 showed support among Nevada voters for 
legalization by a margin of 54 percent to 42 percent, he said. The 
margin continues to widen in support of legalization, Brezny said.

The proposal would enact a 15 percent tax on the wholesale side of 
the recreational marijuana sales. While it is too early to predict 
the potential tax revenue to the

Colorado, Washington voters have legalized pot use state, Brezny said 
Nevada easily could match Colorado, which is seeing more than $1 
million in revenue each week.

"That's a lot of money for our schools," he said.

Brezny said the group will use professionals to assist volunteers in 
gathering signatures and that reaching the minimum number of 
registered voters should not be difficult.

"People are excited to help. We have a great team and funding in place."

Brezny is working with the Washington, D.C.-based Marijuana Policy 
Project on the petition. The group previously tried legalizing small 
amounts of marijuana in Nevada, drawing the support of 39 percent of 
voters in 2002 and 44 percent in 2006.

Since then, voters in Colorado and Washington state have legalized 
marijuana, although it remains a controlled substance under federal law.

Nevada is authorizing the creation of medical marijuana dispensaries 
under a law passed by the 2013 Legislature. Nevada has had a medical 
marijuana program since 2001, but there was no way for patients to 
acquire the drug except by growing their own or buying it on the black market.
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