Marijuana Legalization Bill Introduced in Oklahoma

Marijuana Legalization Bill Introduced in Oklahoma

OKLAHOMA CITY, OK —  A state senator from Oklahoma has introduced a bill to legalize marijuana in Oklahoma, saying that alcohol is more dangerous than marijuana and marijuana should be legal.

Sen. Constance Johnson (D-Oklahoma City) has pre-filed Senate Bill 2116, which will be introduced when the 2014 legislative session begins on February 3.

“We’ve legalized alcohol, which is far more deadly and dangerous than marijuana,” Sen. Johnson tells KFOR-TV. “I think we need to accept the realities that alcohol is a dangerous drug, prescription drugs are dangerous. Marijuana has not killed anyone.”

The bill would legalize the possession of up to an ounce of marijuana by adults 21 or older, and allow for the regulation and taxation of marijuana sales at a rate of $50 per ounce.  The bill also legalizes the sale of marijuana paraphernalia to adults 21 or older.

Tax revenue generated from the marijuana industry would be distributed as follows: 30% to the Department of Education; 10% to the Department of Health for voluntary substance abuse programs; 10% to the Department of Health for the “scientifically and medically accurate” education of health and safety risks of alcohol, tobacco, and marijuana; and the remaining 50% of the tax earmarked for the state’s general revenue fund.

Under the bill, adults would also be able to grow up to five plants away from public view, as long as “reasonable precautions” were taken to secure the area from access to minors and they were growing the plants on their own property or had permission from their landlord to do so.

Adults would be also be able to assist other adults in growing marijuana, and be allowed to give marijuana to other adults provided they are not financially compensated.

The bill imposes fines between $200 and $400 to minors attempting to purchase or possess marijuana using a fake ID.  Possession of up to an ounce of marijuana by minors under 21 would be decriminalized to a civil offense punishable by a mandatory 4-hour drug awareness program. Parents of minors under 18 would also be notified.  Offenders would have to pay for the program, which could cost up to $300.  If an offender fails to complete the program within one year, a $300 fine and/or 40 hours of community service could be imposed as a penalty.

If passed, the Department of Health would oversee the marijuana industry, and they would have 180 days to adopt rules and regulations for the industry including licencing and application requirements, security protocols, and tax collection.

The Department of Health would be required to begin accepting applications from prospective marijuana cultivators, retailers, and processors within one year of the bill becoming law.

Local communities would not be allowed to ban marijuana retailers from their jurisdictions, but would be allowed to cap the number of marijuana businesses they allow to operate.

The bill also allows academic research of marijuana by schools and hospitals, as long as test subjects are 21 years or older.

Senator Johnson, who has seen medical marijuana bills she has introduced in the past killed in committee,  feels that this bill should receive some consideration by her colleagues this year.

“We’re making progress,” she says.  “I think the things that happened in Colorado will mean more action and activism in Oklahoma.”

Of course, it won’t come without opposition from the usual suspects.

“I’ve seen it wreck more lives than any other drug,” says Mark Woodward, of the Oklahoma State Bureau of Narcotics, who opposes the bill. “We’re trying to tell kids to stay off drugs and then they’re seeing voters and legislators voting to legalize getting high on drugs. That makes our job as parents, law enforcement and educators a lot more difficult.”

  • Rob Saxe

    The guy from the state bureau of narcotics must mean alcohol not pot. If he means pot..he’s just trying to protect his paycheck as federal funding for the drug war he loves would vanish in an instant. Not a reputable source of information.

    • Matthew

      No, he has seen it wreck more lives than any other drug because so many people have needlesly had their lives wrecked by being arrested and called a criminal for possessing a mostly harmless enjoyable plant.

      • Rob Saxe

        I stand gleefully corrected! :-)

        • Tommy Rigsby

          You both are correct, and when it comes to employment, good luck when they do a background check…

  • DannyDan

    Legalization will be by state constitutional amendments through citizen initiatives. I don’t expect this to happen via legislators that are out of touch with constituents.

    “I’ve seen it wreck more lives than any other drug,” says Mark Woodward,
    of the Oklahoma State Bureau of Narcotics, who opposes the bill.

    People like Mark Woodward of OSBN are the reason families are being wrecked, parents are going to jail, kids are going to DHS, households are losing a parent and becoming dependent on assistance, people are going to jail and costing Oklahomans millions every year to imprison and feed. Additionally, the kids losing a parent now have less parental guidance and become delinquents. Goverments have power through the consent of the people. Consent is shrinking daily.

    If you drink wine, beer, or any form of alcohol and support the criminalization of alcohol, you need to ask yourself if you’re a hypocrite.

    • Stephanie Johnson

      Where I live people that are high on weed get run over almost every day because of using and walking out in front of cars, this plant is not so innocent!

      • DannyDan

        You are obviously aware that people are already smoking it illegally. I really would like to know what percentage of your friends and family whom do not currently use marijuana are going to run out and buy marijuana just because it’s legal? I’d also like to know which percentage of those that say they will also say it will not reduce their alcohol consumption.

        • Tommy Rigsby

          CEO’s and President of companies, would admit their secret and Bill Clinton could finally inhale…

      • Darletta Geffre

        Seriously…? People walking out in front of cars, its because they are stupid. You have no idea if they are high, and stop making stuff up. There arent a bunch of people walking in front of cars all the time because of that. Its because they didnt look before they walked into the street. Just how many times have you heard, “I was high on weed, and ended up in jail for doing something stupid?” People go to jail aaaall the time that arent “high on weed”.

        • Tamila

          AMEN! People that get “high on pot”, still hold down respectable jobs, fix breakfast for there kids, help them with homework with their kids raking in straight A’s by the way. They do it at night, get the munches and laugh so hard but get up the next morning and their day begins all over.
          People walk out in front of cars for not looking both ways, dumb moment but not as dumb as the person behind the wheel of a car screaming “you gotta be high dummy or with some other foul mouth name calling ….come on!

      • Tommy Rigsby

        Really, usually you don’t get off the couch, and your to relaxed to steal…

        • Tommy Rigsby

          Also, when the media reports an accident you hear drugs or alcohol COULD have been involved before they actually know the facts…

        • John

          I’m motivated & more proavtive than most people when their not on it… by that I mean i take more care of myself, like workin out better & harder, doin my run-arounds, makin notes. if sum1’s jus sittin on the couch thats jus bc thats all they wanna do.

    • John

      Seen it wreck more lives than any other drug, really?! Try lookin at meth & heroin adicts & alcholics. Some of them kinds of people be sittin homeless on a corner with signs jus for money so they can get their fix, brekin into cars & stealin lookin for whatever they can find. People who be smokin pot NEVER go thru such extremes. I could tell u I operate even BETER when i smoke, more relaxed, mind goes through & over thoughts, & helps with stayin possitive & motivated. WAAAAAY more alert on pot.

      • DannyDan

        You overlooked my usage of quotation marks….

        I’m well aware of alcohol being responsible for 40% of all violent crime and that the overall net impact to society from marijuana legalization is better for society because the people that will smoke marijuana after legalization are already smoking it now, or are already using alcohol which marijuana would be used as a substitute and make you relaxed instead of violent. Even if marijuana related crashes increased by a factor of ten, ten times a hand full is just a few handfuls, nothing compared to the thousands killed every year by alcohol related traffic fatalities. Legalizing would reduce traffic fatalities and reduce violent crime. Eventually our state voters will be educated enough and sign petitions to put legalization on the ballot.

  • Matt Bly

    more than ever people are changing their minds about prohibition of cannabis… most people I know never heard of The Daily Chronic.. I feel like I’m the informer of this issue on marijuana laws in Oklahoma… even non-coughers agree it should be legal… we as Oklahomans need to support the legalization of marijuana, not only for recreational use, but for people who can REALLY benefit from it’s medical values… PLEASE KEEP US INFORMED! SPREAD THE WORD! LEGALIZE CANNABIS! AND VOTE FOR CONSTANCE JOHNSON- SHES THE ONLY ONE WHO KNOWS THE BENEFITS OF REGULATING IT FOR OUR STATE!!!!!!!!!!!

  • massvocals

    I just want every citizen realize!!!! We are not out of the drug war / we must continue our force and funding too re- legalize cannabis / marijuana and de-criminalize drug use for medical treatment not prison , , We MUST stop employer form perquisites drug testing .. WE MUST demand testing be base on true threshold levels . Being that the test show being under the effect of drug , to show actual drug use or being under the influence on project and not drug residue… form past usage. Please join your local force promoting legalization and give cash so we can end the prohibition and the attack of law enforcement of cannabis NOW citizen are being kill by police please remember this is free enterprise such dealing in this in respect should be in keeping no reward in tax for government unless sold in store ,,
    Massvocals@comcast.net

    • Stephanie Johnson

      Citizens are being killed because they are being stupid and not out of sport get it right and get the whole story before you judge an officer! Your the type of person to say oh we should just kill all cops aren’t you?! Your an idiot

      • massvocals

        YOU call me idiot , ah well anyone who dawn on a uninform doesn’t understand mala prohibita laws and common law reasoning . then enforces such a law is the fool IF YOU ARE COP listen up. The Constitution 4th amen requires a search warrant to knot on door present it to state what is being search for and where , Not dress up in auto madic

      • confused

        Is that a police uniform thats on your partner whose holding your child in whose wearing hunting clothes. I know exactly now why you oppose marijuana. Your significant other will lose his job. Thats the problem with people like you you are only concerned with lining yourpockets with money from asset forfeitures and throwing people in jail for using medicine thats been medicine for approximately 10,000 years. Well you and yours gravy train is about to end. I hope your child doesnt have his life ruined, assests taken away and sexually abused by strip searches probably from your police officer husband!!!!!!!!

      • confused

        He looks like he loves to strip search people for drugs. Police are very much hated by everyone because of the war on drugs! GROW UP!

      • Smiley

        Before calling someone an idiot, be sure that you can use correct grammar. For Example: You’re an idiot.

      • Smiley

        Before calling someone an idiot, be sure that you can use correct grammar. For Example: You’re an idiot.

      • R.D.B.

        You cant fix stupid !

  • massvocals

    this sound like Massachusetts hey frankly just legalize out right free enterprise as well no reward for government no tax keep it the way it is just make prohibition end and resolve it by full legalization , all the other worry is foolish its happening already its just not legal , that stop no one

  • massvocals

    see mark wood ward should be dismiss form his job his comment on the public will there voting and his message to what ? kids look your a public servant shut up we are the public we want to change the law we do not live as you for kids , by the way your last person I want to advise my kids you understand >>

  • Darletta Geffre

    Seriously Woodword? Wreck so many lives? Yes, maybe when you take people to jail for marijuana and charge them the same or more than murderers and also get longer sentences…yes, that ruins peoples lives. Its pot, you must have it confused with alcohol, or meth. Educate yourself on Cannibus a bit, ask Colorado or Washington if their people are dying over there because of pot, or ask how the economy has improved or not. In case u didnt know, alchohol has a small string of cannibus in it. Remove the rest of the ingredients in alchohol, get a less dangerous drug. Boom.

  • Dan FlyyGang Goodson III

    This very well might be the smartest decision Oklahoma has made since acquiring the Oklahoma City Thunder from Seattle ..which by the way is a state who legalized marijuana awhile ago.

    • Tommy Rigsby

      You know what is funny, the Two Teams in the SuperBowl this year were from the two states that Legalized Marijuana… (Seattle Seahawks and the Denver Broncos).

  • Bo Didley

    Being a drinker for many years, I would support this in a heart beat. Hard liquor makes me want to get wild. Pot, just chills me out in front of the TV enjoying a big Pizza!