Alaska to vote on recreational marijuana ballot initiative in August


Alaska voters could legalize the cultivation and possession of limited amounts of marijuana by the end of the summer after signatures for ballot initiative cleared the final hurdle last week and gained approved from the state Lieutenant Governor.
Signature gatherers only needed around 30,000 signatures, but ended up getting 36,000 just to be safe.

If approved, the measure would create laws in Alaska nearly identical to those passed in 2012 by Colorado. People would be able to posess up to an ounce of pot on them at a time, as well as cultivate up to six plants with no more than three in flower and keep all that you harvest from your personal grow so long as it stays at your house.
The bill would also allow for state-regulated recreational marijuana stores to operate and tax wholesales at around $50 an ounce. Control of that industry would go to the state’s Alcohol Beverage Control Board. (Editor’s note: Watch out Alaska, or they’ll sneak a few more taxes in there like Colorado managed to do).
“Alaska is a red state, but with a heavy libertarian streak,” Taylor Bickford, spokesman for the Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol, told the New York Times. “The idea of personal freedom and responsibility is uniting Alaska on both sides of the aisle.”
Recent polling has showed as many as 55 percent of Alaska voters support the move. Alaska’s election is scheduled for August 19, 2014.
“This is shaping up to be another big year for the movement to end marijuana prohibition,” says Mason Tvert, spokesman for the Marijuana Policy Project and co-director of Colorado’s successful Amendment 64 legalization campaign. “Voters in Alaska will consider regulating marijuana like alcohol, voters nearly 5,000 miles away in the opposite corner of the country will consider legalizing it for medical purposes and everyone in between will be watching.”
Oregon cannabis supporters have also begun collecting signatures in that state for a similar measure.