Nevada lawmakers will tackle the recreational marijuana issue early next year, whether they’re ready to or not.
Advocates have reportedly collected more than 100,000 signatures for a measure that would legalize the production, sale and use of recreational cannabis. As a result, the state Legislature must take up the proposal as a bill and vote on it during the legislative session that begins in January, according to a report by KNPR, a local National Public Radio affiliate.
If lawmakers pass the bill, Nevada would become the first state in the nation to legalize recreational marijuana via a state legislature.
The chances of that happening appear slim at this point, as there’s still a lot of resistance among lawmakers. That means voters could get the chance to weigh in: If the Legislature fails to approve the measure, it is automatically guaranteed a spot on the 2016 ballot, according to a state senator.
The proposed law is similar to the system already set up in Colorado and Washington State. It would allow adults 21 and older to use marijuana and allow businesses to grow, process and sell cannabis. But sales would be taxed at the same rate as other industries, meaning taxes would be much lower than in the first two states to legalize recreational cannabis. Wholesale transactions would be taxed at a 15% rate.