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California Cannabis Hemp and Health Initiative (2012)

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A California Cannabis Hemp and Health Initiative (#11-0073) was approved for circulation in California as a contender for the November 6, 2012 ballot.

Its sponsors, however, did not submit any signatures to election officials by the deadline.

If the initiative had qualified for the ballot and been approved by the state's voters, it would have:

  • Decriminalized marijuana and hemp use, possession, cultivation, transportation, or distribution.
  • Prohibited the state for aiding or assisting in the enforcement of federal marijuana laws.
  • Provided that anyone currently arrested or serving time for non-violent marijuana offenses shall be immediately released from prison, jail, parole or probation.
  • Provided that arrest records and convictions for non-violent marijuana offenses would be erased.
  • Authorized the California State Legislature to adopt laws to license and tax commercial marijuana sales.
  • Allowed doctors to approve or recommend marijuana to patients, regardless of age.
  • Placed limits on the ability of employers and insurers to test for marijuana.

The initiative was supported by the "Reefer Raiders" who, according to the Los Angeles Times, are "friends and disciples of the late pot guru and author Jack Herer, who have filed pot initiatives in one form or another since 1980."[1]

In addition to legalizing "cannabis hemp" for industrial, medicinal, nutritional uses, their initiative would also have legalized marijuana for its "euphoric" use.[1]

Similar initiatives

Voting on Marijuana
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The "Cannabis Hemp and Health" initiative was not the only marijuana-related initiative vying for a spot on California's November 6, 2012 statewide ballot. The others were:

Because multiple marijuana-related initiatives were in circulation in California, they all experienced difficulty raising the funds necessary to qualify for the ballot. Steve Collett, who supported the Regulate Marijuana Like Wine Initiative, said, "We're all chasing the same dollars."[1]

A group of people closely associated with the Proposition 19 effort, including Richard Lee, had also indicated that they might attempt to qualify a marijuana legalization initiative for the 2012 ballot.[2] However, in September 2011, Lee told a group at the International Cannabis and Hemp Expo in Oakland that this effort was falling apart: "It’s pretty much dead. The funders didn’t come through."[3]

Text of measure

See also: Ballot titles, summaries and fiscal statements for California's 2012 ballot propositions

Ballot title:

Marijuana Legalization. Initiative Statute.

Official summary:

"Decriminalizes marijuana and hemp use, possession, cultivation, transportation, or distribution. Provides persons arrested or serving time for non-violent marijuana offenses shall be immediately released from prison, jail, parole or probation, and arrest records and convictions for non-violent marijuana offenses shall be erased. Authorizes Legislature to adopt laws to license and tax commercial marijuana sales. Allows doctors to approve or recommend marijuana to patients, regardless of age. Limits testing for marijuana for employment or insurance purposes. Bars state from aiding enforcement of federal marijuana laws."

Summary of estimated fiscal impact:

See also: Fiscal impact statements for California's 2012 ballot propositions

(This is a summary of the initiative's estimated "fiscal impact on state and local government" prepared by the California Legislative Analyst's Office and the Director of Finance.)

"Savings potentially in the low hundreds of millions of dollars annually to state and local governments on the costs of enforcing certain marijuana-related offenses, handling the related criminal cases in the court system, and incarcerating and supervising certain marijuana offenders. Potential net additional tax revenues in the low hundreds of millions of dollars annually related to the production and sale of marijuana."

Path to the ballot

See also: California signature requirements

External links

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References