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February 24, 2016

CONTACT: Sam Mahood

(916) 653-6575


Proposed Initiative Enters Circulation

Marijuana Legalization. Initiative Statute.


SACRAMENTO – Secretary of State Alex Padilla announced the proponent of a new initiative was cleared to begin collecting petition signatures yesterday.  

The Attorney General prepares the legal title and summary that is required to appear on initiative petitions. When the official language is complete, the Attorney General forwards it to the proponent and to the Secretary of State, and the initiative may be circulated for signatures. The Secretary of State then provides calendar deadlines to the proponent and to county elections officials. The Attorney General’s official title and summary for the measure is as follows: 

MARIJUANA LEGALIZATION. INITIATIVE STATUTE. Legalizes marijuana under state law. Applies general retail sales taxes to non-medical marijuana. Permits Legislature to place additional excise tax on non-medical marijuana sales, up to 15% of retail price. Permits local governments to ban or limit the number of marijuana businesses within their boundaries if their voters approve. Requires State to create and fund diversion programs in each county exclusively for marijuana offenders. Requires Legislature to pass laws implementing the initiative. Summary of estimate by Legislative Analyst and Director of Finance of fiscal impact on state and local government: Reduced costs ranging from tens of millions of dollars to potentially exceeding $100 million annually to state and local governments related to enforcing certain marijuana-related offenses, handling the related criminal cases in the court system, and incarcerating and supervising certain marijuana offenders. Net additional state and local tax revenues of potentially up to several hundred million dollars annually related to the production and sale of marijuana. (15-0120.) 

The Secretary of State’s tracking number for this measure is 1779 and the Attorney General’s tracking number is 15-0120. 

The proponent of the measure, Dave Hodges, must collect the signatures of 365,880 registered voters (five percent of the total votes cast for Governor in the November 2014 general election) in order to qualify it for the November 2016 ballot. The proponent has 180 days to circulate petitions for the measure, meaning the signatures must be submitted to county elections officials by August 22, 2016.  The proponent can be reached at No phone number was provided.