A campaign to legalize recreational marijuana use in California next year reached the starting gate with the filing of a ballot initiative backed by technology investor Sean Parker, the Associated Press reports. Parker is the billionaire who upended the music business as a teenager by co-founding the file sharing site Napster and served as Facebook’s first president. The Parker-led push to put California among the states where marijuana can be sold to and legally used by adults for recreation is one of more than a dozen that has been submitted for the November 2016 election. Because of the deep pockets, political connections and professional credibility of its supporters, observers think the so-called Adult Use of Marijuana Act is the vehicle with the greatest chance of success.
“This is the one to watch. This is the one,” said Nate Bradley of the California Cannabis Industry Association. “This one has this broad-based coalition behind it, the funding behind it…and still allows for a free market in the cannabis industry.” The measure would allow adults 21 and over to buy an ounce of marijuana and marijuana-infused products at licensed retail outlets and also to grow up to six pot plants for personal recreational use. It incorporates most of the elements of a regulatory framework for the medical marijuana industry Gov. Jerry Brown signed last month. The initiative has lined up support from the Drug Policy Alliance and the Marijuana Policy Project, two leading marijuana reform groups that led the earlier campaigns to pass pot legalization measures in Colorado, Washington, Oregon and Alaska.