marijuana-legalization

Nick Lachey wants to legalize pot in ohio and grow it.
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Nick Lachey's days of burning up the charts may be over, but he's not against burning other things.

According to The Cannabist, his next business venture is trying to see if the grass is greener on the other side of legalization.

Ohio resident and former boy band star Nick Lachey is among five investors in one of 10 marijuana grow centers that would be created across the state under a proposed ballot issue.

The ballot issue would limit the growing to specific locations where groups of investors financing the operations own or have the option to buy property.

ResponsibleOhio estimates the initiative would generate about $21.5 million in annual tax revenue for Summit County and its townships and municipalities.



That's not the end of the story for Lachey's marijuana empire and Ohio's legalization. Buzzfeed News is reporting that many opponents exist of the initiative and not just because of its pot content. The amendment sounds like it would keep any future weed business in the hands of a very select few, of which Lachey hopes to be a part.

The proposed constitutional amendment would restrict all commercial growth and extraction of weed to 10 specific farms — farms that are owned and operated by the investors bankrolling the effort to pass the initiative. That means the entire legal marijuana industry in Ohio would be controlled by a group of wealthy businesspeople, or what those opposed to the initiative are calling a monopoly, an oligopoly, or a cartel. The rest of the state would be able to apply for one of the 1,150 licenses for marijuana retail stores and testing labs, but all of the shops would need to buy their pot from a group that currently confers over conference call once a week.
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Marijuana legalization advocates have an unlikely new supporter: right-wing evangelical leader Pat Robertson.

In an interview this week, Robertson said he believes marijuana should be treated "the way we treat beverage alcohol," and came out in support of decriminalization measures that will be on the ballot this fall in Washington and Colorado.

"I've never used marijuana and I don't intend to," he said, "But it's just one of those things that I think: this war on drugs just hasn't succeeded."

His newly-public position wasn't inspired by any particular event, he said. He just believes that America "has gone overboard on this concept of being tough on crime," and that current penalties for pot possession are too stiff.

Robertson isn't troubled by accusations from other conservatives that he has "forsaken the straight and narrow" with his pro-legalization views.

"I just want to be on the right side," he said. "And I think on this one, I'm on the right side."

[nyt.]

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Record High Poll Numbers of the Day: According to a new Gallup poll published today, 50% of American are in favor of legalizing marijuana, marking the first time more people were for legalization than were against it since Gallup started asking the q

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