Support this! “Cannabis Revenue and Freedom Act” just filed in NM

Last week Representatives Bill McCamley and Javier Martinez introduced House Bill 89, the Cannabis Revenue and Freedom Act, that would make marijuana available for recreational use in New Mexico. With the overwhelming evidence that states with legal pot can create new and lucrative revenue streams for public works, HB 89 is a win-win for New Mexico.

Will 2017 be the year marijuana is legalized in New Mexico?

Rep. Bill McCamley of Las Cruces is hoping that the fourth time is the charm when it comes to legalizing marijuana for recreational use in New Mexico. “On the house side, Republicans have controlled the House of Representatives for the last two years and they’ve killed this. I mean, they’ve not let this out for discussion. I’ve introduced this three separate times.” McCamley said today in a press conference in Las Cruces.

Democrats call for Marijuana policy reform in new state, national platforms

In another sign of the influence of progressives on the platform of the Democratic Party, DNC platform committee members this week adopted new planks in their platform calling for a reasoned pathway to future legalization” of marijuana, as well as downgrading marijuana in the Controlled Substances Act. As the Washington Post reports from Orlando, the 81-80 vote in favor was a surprise to many who expected the party to embrace a state-by-state legalization strategy. Back home in New Mexico, state Democrats already carried Marijuana policy reform in the state platform.  “Marijuana should be decriminalized” says the Democratic Party of New Mexico platform. At the time it was adopted, that position was on the forefront of marijuana policy change nationwide.

#NMLEG Progressive Bill of the Day | 02-12-15

A key Senate committee moved a marijuana legalization bill forward today, setting in motion the process to put the issue on a 2016 statewide ballot for voters. SJR2, sponsored by Senator Jerry Ortiz y Pino (D-Abq.), proposes to “amend the state constitution by adding a new section to allow for possession and personal use of marijuana for persons 21 years of age and older” and permit the state to tax and regulate the sale of personal use amounts of marijuana. Voters in Bernalillo and Santa Fe Counties overwhelmingly approved ballot questions in 2014 asking if voters wanted elected leaders to support marijuana decriminalization for personal use. DecrimNM, the public campaign supporting those initiatives, was a joint campaign of the Drug Policy Alliance and ProgressNow New Mexico. After debating the issue, the Senate Rules Committee voted to move the bill forward.

Job-creating, money-making, legal marijuana could come to New Mexico

Though Rep. Bill McCamely’s marijuana legalization bill is likely to fail, a Constitutional Amendment proposed by State Sen. Jerry Ortiz y Pino might be positioned to see more success. Since Rep. Ortiz y Pino introduced a Constitutional Amendment rather than a bill, our governor doesn’t have the option to veto. It would go directly to a vote by the public, if approved by both houses of the legislature. And, we all know how November’s elections turned out… If you don’t, that’s okay, here are those numbers from Santa Fe New Mexican:
In Santa Fe County (where Martinez lost big to King), the governor received 15,549 votes — 17,719 less than the number of people who voted to decriminalize the devil’s flower.

New Mexico is facing a big hole in the budget in 2015. This legislator wants to plug it with pot. Is he right?

History will look back on 2014 as a “watershed” year for marijuana, many political scientists believe.   Colorado led the nation with the first legal recreational marijuana sales in January, followed by votes at the end of the year in Alaska and Oregon to follow suit. And voters expressed overwhelming support for most marijuana ballot questions across the country, including two here in New Mexico. With Colorado pulling in a reported $30,000,000 in new revenues from its first year of taxed-and-regulated pot, legislators in other states are looking to marijuana as a new crop of revenue to fund previously underfunded programs like education and expand a state’s economic base. Acting on a resolution passed by the state legislature in 2014, New Mexico’s Legislative Council Service is expected to release a study in early 2015 analyzing the fiscal impacts of legalization in Colorado.

Tucked into federal spending bill, new rules drastically alter federal marijuana policies

As politicos weigh in on whether Sen. Ted Cruz should have filibustered the $1.1 Trillion federal spending bill to reduce federal spending, or whether Sen. Elizabeth Warren should have beat him to it to stop a provision giving Wall Street renewed permission to gamble with public money, drug policy reform advocates are quietly lobbying President Obama to sign the bill because it includes sweeping new protections for state marijuana programs that otherwise defy federal law. The Drug Policy Alliance is out with this report today:
WASHINGTON, D.C. – The final “cromnibus” federal spending bill that Congress passed over the weekend contains historic language prohibiting the U.S. Justice Department from spending any money to undermine state medical marijuana laws. The spending bill also includes a bipartisan amendment that prohibits the DEA from blocking implementation of a federal law passed last year by Congress that allows hemp cultivation for academic and agricultural research purposes in states that allow it. It also contains an amendment allowing Washington, D.C.’s voter-approved initiative legalizing marijuana possession and home cultivation for personal use to move forward, but prohibits D.C. policymakers from using any local or federal 2015 funding to tax and regulate marijuana like alcohol. “For the first time, Congress is letting states set their own medical marijuana and hemp policies, a huge step forward for sensible drug policy,” said Bill Piper, director of the Drug Policy Alliance’s office of national affairs.

Legislative Committee to hear Marijuana legalization proposal

After residents of Santa Fe and Bernalillo County voted overwhelmingly this November in support of decriminalizing marijuana, our elected officials are ready to act on sensible drug policy reforms.

Representative Bill McCamley (D-Dona Ana) will conduct a presentation about the benefits of marijuana legalization at the Legislative Health and Human Services committee meeting Tuesday (11/25) and is expected to announce his intent to introduce marijuana taxation and regualtion legislation during the 2015 legislative session. Rep. McCamley is one of several legislators who announced plans to address marijuana policy reform after campaigns supporting marijuana decriminalization won by substantial margins in New Mexico’s 1st and 3rd most populated counties. Voters in 90.7% of Bernalillo County precincts and 94.3% of Santa Fe County precincts supported marijuana decriminalization in the 2014 elections. Four states have now legalized recreational marijuana use (Colorado, Washington, Alaska, Oregon). Rep. McCamley argues that taxing and regulating legal marijuana has economic benefits for the state including increased state revenue, reduced incarceration costs, and better focused police resources. The hearing will be Tuesday, November 25, 2014 at 1:00 PM at the State Capitol, Room 307.