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Wisconsin should be the next state to legalize marijuana

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The biggest dispensary of leisure marijuana in Illinois opened final summer season in a strategic and profitable spot: proper alongside the state line with Wisconsin.

The 7,200-square-foot Sunnyside retailer in South Beloit, Illinois, is only a 55-mile drive down Interstate 39-90 from Madison. It’s anticipated to generate $100,000 in native gross sales tax income a yr whereas encouraging extra improvement, in accordance to South Beloit Mayor Ted Rehl.

“At a dozen totally different ranges, this can be a reward to South Beloit,” Rehl advised the Rockford Register.

Certainly one of the largest givers is Wisconsin. The article in the Rockford newspaper featured a buyer from Whitewater making a purchase order at the South Beloit dispensary, which is seen from the interstate and employs 35 folks. Rehl expects his group’s annual income from the retailer to ultimately enhance to $700,000 yearly — assuming, he mentioned, Wisconsin doesn’t legalize leisure pot.

We positive hope Wisconsin lawmakers are smarter than that. It’s time to acknowledge actuality at the statehouse in Madison: Marijuana isn’t the horrible substance it was made out to be for many years, and Wisconsin is shedding thousands and thousands of {dollars} in income to different states — with out successfully stopping the drug’s use.

Related marijuana dispensaries are anticipated alongside the Higher Michigan state line catering to northeastern Wisconsin residents. The Menominee, Michigan, metropolis council final month accredited an ordinance permitting growers and stores, in accordance to the Marinette Eagle Herald. Menominee is adjoining to the Wisconsin metropolis of Marinette, about 55 miles northeast of Inexperienced Bay. Two universities in Michigan are even providing diploma applications “to break into the budding enterprise,” the Detroit Free Press reported.

Right here in Madison, the Metropolis Council this month correctly accredited small quantities of marijuana for private use in the metropolis, assuming the proprietor of the property the place it’s consumed has given permission. Although state and federal regulation nonetheless ban possession, the metropolis is appearing by itself, thanks to a pledge from Dane County District Legal professional Ismael Ozanne not to prosecute small quantities.

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Wisconsin’s outdated and unscientific view of cannabis should change.

Thank President Trump for investing in Madison

As Madison’s new ordinance displays, and as the Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention has warned, marijuana use by youngsters can hurt their creating brains. That’s why Madison doesn’t permit consumption by anybody youthful than 18, and bars cannabis inside 1,000 ft of colleges and on college buses. Driving excessive is harmful, which is why Madison prohibits marijuana use in motor autos which might be working.

However when it comes to adults, legalizing and regulating the sale and possession of small quantities of marijuana in Wisconsin will clear up extra issues than it creates. The drug hasn’t brought about surges in crime and dependancy in states which have allowed it for medical and leisure use. As an alternative, it has pulled in tens of thousands and thousands of {dollars} in income for governments whereas letting grownups use a substance much less dangerous than alcohol.

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Voters in the Nov. 3 election accredited leisure marijuana in New Jersey, Arizona, Montana and South Dakota, bringing to 15 states the quantity that may now let adults smoke pot for enjoyment.

Wisconsin should comply with this development. Legalizing marijuana right here would liberate our police and courts to take care of severe crime. It additionally would assist fund state companies. In Oklahoma, one among the nation’s most conservative states, marijuana proceeds have created extra income than the state lottery.

A brand new state Legislature should give leisure pot a good listening to and consideration when lawmakers return to the Capitol in Madison in January. Regulating and taxing cannabis will make utilizing the drug safer, cut back crime, enhance state income and grant adults extra freedom to reside their lives as they please.