Missouri state representative says marijuana legalization “possible, but unlikely”


Missouri Rep. Chris Kelly has filed language that would legalize medical and recreational cannabis in Missouri, using language that closely follows another proposed ballot initiative.
In addition to legalizing taxed and regulated sales of ganja, House Bill 1659 would regulate recreational cannabis like alcohol, with a 21-and-up age limit. Missourians would be able to cultivate up to eight plants in their home and keep up to 16 ounces of herb, 16 ounces of edibles and 72 ounces of tinctures and other liquid-infused cannabis products.

The bill was crafted on language of a possible ballot measure crafted by the Show-Me Cannabis Regulation, though Kelly’s bill would only change state law and not change the state constitution like the Show-Me Cannabis Regulation proposal.
Kelly says he’s hopeful for the bill, but that he’s also a realist. If anything, he says introducing a pot bill at the legislative level would get the conversation started.
“Passing is possible, but unlikely,” Kelly told the Missourian this week.
Supporters say that Kelly’s status as a well-respected, longstanding member of the legislature could bode well for his bill.
“Chris might be the most respected legislator in Jefferson City, so people of both parties really take him seriously, even when they disagree with him,” said John Payne, executive director of Show-Me Cannabis.
The current proposal would limit the number of pot shops in each county to one for every 2,500 residents. Pot shops would be subjected to annual licensing as well as a 25 percent tax on all cannabis sales.