Representative Diane Russell, a Democrat from Portland, will release An Act to Legalize and Tax Marijuana at Portland City Hall at 10 am tomorrow.
The bill would tax pot at seven percent, "license certain commercial marijuana-related
activities while providing provisions to protect minors, employers and schools."
"The current policy has left us with absolutely no control over the
market leaving young people readily able to access marijuana," said
Russell in a press release. "In addition, we are considering serious cuts to public safety
and education as a result of a bad economy. Let's create a stringent
regulatory system to protect our children while securing tax revenue
from a market we all know exists."
The bill will have a public hearing (yet unscheduled) before the Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee sometime in the coming weeks; if it is approved there, it will move on to the House and Senate. Other pot-decriminalization bills have not fared well this session.