Prop 205: Voters to decide if recreational marijuana will be legal in Arizona

FOX 10's Marc Martinez reports.

- Several races in November are set, but what about the ballot measures? The most talked about is Prop 205 - the measure to legalize recreational marijuana.

Fifteen percent tax on retail marijuana sales to go to public health and education. Adults 21 and over can purchase, possess, privately grow and privately consume limited amounts of marijuana.

"It's just that simple. Prohibition has been a failure, we need to do something else and lets benefit our schools in the process," said J.P. Holyoak, Chairman of the Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol.

The group is behind Proposition 205. Holyoak says regulating and taxing recreational marijuana for adults would not only bring tens of millions of dollars in tax revenue each year, it would also cut down on crime caused by cartels.

"So the choice that we really have is are we going to tax and regulate marijuana, send the money to our schools? Or are we going to keep it legal for the enrichment of criminal drug dealers? That's really our only choice here," said Holyoak.

"When you look at this particular initiative, dispensary owners have become greedy to the point of trying to use the ballot box as a way of pushing croney capitalism," said Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery.

Montgomery opposes the measure and was one of the plaintiffs who sued to keep it off the ballot. He feels it's a money grab by dispensary owners and has long been opposed to legalizing marijuana, even for medical purposes.

"The only reason you could say with a straight face that marijuana use is less dangerous than alcohol use today is because we don't see the same level of consequence to our society as we do with alcohol," said Montgomery.

"To say that it's gone up or it's higher is a bold faced lie. And the prohibitionists have done nothing but lie using scare tactics, fear mongering and frankly making things up in a desperate attempt to keep voters from approving that they know is objectively safer than alcohol," said Holyoak.

"Why would we bet on the future of our youth to throw in $50 million, $60 million into an education system that youth won't be able to take advantage of because they became addicted to marijuana as a consequence of its greater availability and higher potency. That's cruel," said Montgomery.


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