The Rate of U.S. Legalization for Cannabis


The cannabis industry has continued to boom over the course of the past several years, but new updates to legalization has continued to help move the market forward. As we move toward the future of the industry it seems as though proper legislation in the way of what the public would like to see occur has been one of the most important steps for moving the industry in the right direction. Only twenty years ago, cannabis was illegal throughout the U.S., and now we have moved in the right direction for the future.

The two most important distinctions in the industry have been that of decriminalization versus legalization. Oregon back in 1973 was the first to decriminalize cannabis with a $100 fine for anyone in possession of up to an ounce of cannabis. Well around a dozen other states quickly worked to decriminalize cannabis, manufacturing and selling the substance still remained extremely illegal. Legalization, on the other hand, has made it illegal for individuals to produce cannabis legally and then sell it. Within that distinction, there is also the difference between legalizing medicinal cannabis and the recreational version of the substance.

One of the most important laws that have been passed in the history of the industry has been Prop 215 in California which was passed back in 1996. California quickly became known as the first state to legalize cannabis for medicinal use in the U.S. California also, being one of the largest states in the U.S. was a very large push for other states to legalize the substance as well. Also, the success of the quickly growing market helped to create a domino effect for the rest of the country.

In 2012, Colorado put forth Amendment 64, which was another important step in the right direction for cannabis as they became the first state to legalize the use of recreational cannabis nationwide. This also helped to set a standard for the rest of the country as they quickly saw how successful the industry could be. The state also quoted their statistics of around $1.5 billion in sales for both medicinal and recreational cannabis for the 2017 year.

Washington state then put forth the initiative 502 in 2012 which occurred after residents voted in favor of recreational cannabis around the same time that Colorado decided to do so. This was another big step as it helped to back up the move by Colorado.

One of the most important moves in the country has been the push for California’s Proposition 64 which effectively legalized the use of recreational cannabis throughout the state. This quickly led to California being the most lucrative and largest cannabis market in the world which has helped to show that cannabis can work in tandem with other economies in the country as a successful market.

The cannabis industry has remained one of the most important markets of the modern day as it shows a successful legislative battle for something so important to the public. The hopes are high that the market can continue its reign toward the future as more and more of the public backs up the growth of the space.



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