Proposal 1, which would legalize recreational marijuana, was approved by Michigan voters on Tuesday night. WEMU's David Fair talks to MI Legalize board member Jamie Lowell about what to expect when the proposal goes into effect.
All Three Statewide Ballot Proposals Win Voter Approval
Michigan voters have passed all three of ballot measures placed before them. Proposal 1 legalizes recreational marijuana, Proposal 2 is the “Voters Not Politicians” measure that will implement plans to end gerrymandering, and the “Promote the Vote” Proposal 3 aims to increase voter access and limit voter suppression.
A lot of work still needs to be done before the system to legally sell marijuana is fully in place. A state licensing system for businesses wishing to sell product will need to be fully developed and implemented. Ultimately, those who are at least 21-years of age will be able to buy and possess marijuana and marijuana-infused edibles. For those who so choose, the law will allow for growing up to 12 plants for personal consumption. Several current criminal laws regarding marijuana will be reduced to civil infractions. In addition to the 6% sales tax in Michigan, there will be a 10% retail tax for marijuana.
Every 10 years, legislative district lines are redrawn based on census count and changes in population. Deciding how those lines are drawn has fallen to the controlling party in the state legislature. The “Voters Not Politicians” ballot measure takes that responsibility out of the hands of elected lawmakers and puts it in the hands of a citizens committee. The Secretary of State will be charged with creating a 13-person committee, consisting of randomly-selected, registered voters. There will be two Democrats, two Republicans, and five appointees who do not affiliate with either major party. Together, they’ll be responsible for redistricting in a manner that best reflects the state’s diverse population without providing either major party a distinct voting advantage.
The manner in which Michigan residents vote will have more options moving forward. That was the idea behind the “Promote the Vote” ballot proposal pushed, primarily, by the American Civil Liberties Union. It amends the state constitution and enacts a number of changes. Qualified individuals will be automatically registered to vote when applying for or renewing a driver’s license or State identification. It allows residents to register and obtain a ballot within the two-week period before an election, up to and including Election Day. There will be no-reason absentee voting, and straight-ticket voting will be restored as an option.
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