Legalization of the use, taxation, cultivation and sale of industrial hemp and cannabis.
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Subject Matter:
Legalization of the use, taxation, cultivation and sale of industrial hemp and cannabis.  (See Comments)

Original Filing:
MISSISSIPPI'S CONSTITUTION SHALL BE AMENDED TO ADD: ARTICLE 15,SECTION 286,AND ARTICLE FIVE,SECTION 124-A ARTICLE 15,SECTION 286:The people of Mississippideclare an end to the prohibition on cannabis, and fully legalize the use,taxation (if applicable),medical use,cultivation and sale of both industrial hemp, and cannabis (as defined by the Federal Government),only for adults who are 21years or older. Cannabis farmers growing plants that exceed Federal Government THC levels for industrial hemp must secure their crops from unauthorized harvesting. Cannabis,with THC levels exceeding those of industrial hemp will be regulated like alcohol no later than 240 days from enactment. Regulations will require an annual Mississippi Cannabis Sales license issued by any Mississippi County Circuit Clerk for a fee of no more than $1,000.00 to all adult residents who apply, and a $25.00 annual city or county governing locality fee to farm 25- 500 plants.Locality fees for cannabis farms with more than 500 plants will not exceed $1,000.00. A Mississippi sales tax of 7% will be collected upon every sale, except sales for cannabis sold for medicinal purposes and for industrial hemp which will be exempt from taxation. Sales License Fees and annual locality fees are to be retained by the locality. Owners of 24 or fewer cannabis plants are not considered farmers and are not required to pay a farming locality fee. The 7% cannabis sales tax, and the farming locality fees may be reviewed in 2025 and every 5 years thereafter.The cannabis sales tax can only be lowered;farming locality fees may be adjusted but only by 10%. All 7% sales taxes collected shall benefit Mississippi public schools,Mississippi Department of Human Services and Mississippi Department of Public Safety until 2025 when the distribution of funds may be reviewed. Cannabis-related crimes may be punished in a manner similar to, or to a lesser degree,than alcohol-related crimes. The legislature shall add a process for expunging the criminal record of any person convicted of non-violent cannabis possession, sales and manufacture against the State of Mississippi. Industrial hemp shall be regulated by the Dept. of Agriculture.The Dept. of Health shall be responsible for a state-wide dispensary program and begin the issuing of identification for medicinal cannabis patients within 180 days from enactment.The Chancery Courts of this state shall have the power to enforce this section with injunctive relief. ARTICLE FIVE,SECTION 124-A:The Governor shall pardon persons convicted of non-violent cannabis violations against the State of Mississippi, both prior and current, within 60 days of receipt of their written request,as long as they meet the qualifications.The Chancery courts of this state shall have the power to enforce this section with injunctive relief. Amount and Source of Revenue Required to Implement Ballot Initiative: The estimated gross income from the 7%cannabis sales tax is $17 million dollars for the first 7 months of sales. INTENT:It is the intent of this Amendment to the Mississippi Constitution to legalize the use,cultivation and sale of cannabis and industrial hemp for adults and regulate it like alcohol. Mississippi will be forgiving.

Proposed Ballot Title:
Should the Mississippi Constitution be amended to legalize the use, taxation, cultivation and sale of industrial hemp and cannabis.

Proposed Ballot Summary:
Initiative No. 60 proposes to legalize the use, taxation, cultivation and sale of industrial hemp and cannabis for persons 21 or older. Cannabis crimes would be punishable in a manner similar to alcohol related crimes. The initiative requires the Legislature to adopt an expungement process for non-violent cannabis crimes and requires the Governor to pardon non-violent cannabis offenders. The initiative delegates enforcement authority to the Chancery Courts.

Initiative Petition:
N/A

Sponsor:
David R. Singletary
Address:
P.O. Box 2363
Jackson, MS 39225


Status:
Active

Town Meeting Location:
N/A

Initiative Information:
The official ballot title and ballot summary for an initiative measure are prepared by the Mississippi Attorney General’s Office. Initiative measures are valid for one year beginning from the date the ballot title and ballot summary are finally established. During this one-year period, a petition may be circulated to place the measure on the next statewide general election ballot to allow the voters of Mississippi to determine whether the measure should become a part of the Mississippi Constitution. According to Mississippi law, for an initiative measure to be placed on the ballot, a minimum of 86,183 certified signatures must be gathered, with at least 17,237 certified signatures from each of the five congressional districts as they existed in the year 2000. This required number of signatures represents twelve percent (12%) of the total number of votes cast for Governor in the last gubernatorial general election. Signatures must be certified by county circuit clerks as belonging to registered voters in Mississippi. A completed petition should be filed with Secretary of State, together with a filing fee of $500.00. For more information on the initiative process in Mississippi, consult the Mississippi Constitution of 1890, Section 273, and Mississippi Code Annotated §§ 23-17-1 through 23-17-61 (1972).

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