D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser announced the Safe Cannabis Sales Act, a new bill that would finally legalize the sales of recreational marijuana. Recreational use of marijuana has been legal for adults over 21 since 2015, but it’s taken D.C. officials four years to follow up with the sales legalization bill.
Mayor Bowser’s concern over the inconsistency of the current state of marijuana laws in D.C. – the fact that it’s legal to possess and use, without any legal ways to buy it – prompted her to act on it and propose a new bill to finally legalize the sale of marijuana.
She tweeted yesterday:
“We want to be able to regulate, we want to be able to make sure we are collecting our fair share in taxes, we want to invest those taxes in ways that affect communities that have been disproportionately affected, & we want to train & hire D.C. residents.”
Ever since 2015 the possession and transfer of up to two ounces of cannabis has been legal for adults over 21, as well as the cultivation of six mature plants (12 in total). However, D.C. does not issue licenses to businesses to manufacture, test, or sell marijuana, which leaves recreational marijuana users to look for this product on the streets.
Mayor Bowser is determined to suppress the illegal cannabis market in D.C. and she’s proposing the Safe Cannabis Sales Act to make buying marijuana safer for users, and beneficial for the community.
Benefits of the Safe Cannabis Sales Act
Mayor Bowser’s plan involves several benefits for the community, especially those who have been hit the hardest by marijuana criminalization. Some of the proposed benefits are:
- To generate significant tax revenue from marijuana sales into communities
- To seal records for most marijuana convictions, so that previously convicted marijuana users can find jobs, take loans, rent homes, etc.
- To mandate from industry employers to employ D.C. residents (60% of workforce)
According to the Washington Post, the mayor is hoping to get moving on legalization before the 2020 elections.