Voters get to decide if marijuana should be legalized in Michigan

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Should recreational marijuana be legal in Michigan? It's up to *you* to decide, come November.

Voters will get the chance to decide after state lawmakers failed to pass a move to legalize pot on their own after the legislature decided not to approve the legalization. Everyone will get that chance on the Nov. 6th ballot.

"When recreational marijuana comes it is going to be regulated, tested and safe," said Barton Morris an attorney with the Cannabis Legal Group. 

A yes vote would allow those 21 or older to possess up to 10 ounces of marijuana at home, purchase 2.5 ounces at any one time, and grow up to 12 plants.  

But there are other provisions on the ballot like mandatory testing.  Someday pot will be safer and eliminate crime. 
"People can go to a regulated store and buy safe, effective, recreational marijuana," said Morris. "They don't have to get it from drug dealers."

And the law will impose a 10 percent tax where 35 percent will go to fix Michigan's roads, 35 percent to schools, and the rest to municipalities that allow marijuana facilities.  

But some argue the legalization would do more harm than good.

"You are talking about 2.5 ounces of marijuana that a person can possess," said retired Ferndale Police Chief Tim Collins. "Plus 10 ounces that they can keep in their home.

"That seems to me an enormous amount of marijuana that a person may or may not need."

Retired Ferndale Police Chief Tim Collins was sought out because of his extensive anti-drug work and his knowledge of the medical marijuana act.  He raises questions in the employment arena. 

"Employees, can they come in under the influence of marijuana," he said. "Can they use it on the premises if there is private property. If someone is hurt on the job while they are under the influence of marijuana."

And Collins is encouraging a no vote in November.

"I've read it," he said. "And there are serious flaws in the referendum that will have to be addressed legislatively which will be very difficult to make any changes and through the court system."

The actual language that voters will see on the ballot has not been approved yet. Like any proposal, the fine print should be considered.