Is Weed Legal In Arizona?
Arizona joined the 13 fully-legalized marijuana states in November 2020. This decision was reached after voters passed Proposition 207 by 60% to 40%. The ballots were certified by the Arizona Secretary of State, making the new ballot measure a new law. This new law, also known as the Smart and Safe Arizona Act (SSAA), legalizes recreational cannabis use.
Medical cannabis is a form of medical treatment that acts as a complement to or as an alternative to traditional medicine and narcotics. Recreational or adult use of marijuana, on the other hand, refers to the recreational use of cannabis by people over the age of 21.
Dispensaries will not legally be able to sell any recreational marijuana until March 2021, when they get their licenses. When weed is legal in Arizona in March, you should have plenty of options to purchase marijuana in your local area.
Overview of Proposition 207
Proposition 207, also known as the SSAA, is a law that legalizes the use of adult recreational marijuana, allowing adults ages 21 and older to possess up to 28 grams of marijuana in Arizona. Among the key facts of the law include;
- Adults ages 21 and older can buy, sell, and possess up to 1 ounce (28g) of marijuana and have up to 6 cannabis plants at their home, with up to 12 plants in a household with more than two adult members.
- The marijuana will be subject to state and local taxes, with a 16% excise tax, the same as alcohol and tobacco, together with the state’s 5.6%. The revenue will be split between different state agencies and community programs like community colleges and police and fire departments.
- Possession of more than one ounce but less than 2.5 ounces is considered a petty offense.
- Marijuana use is illegal in public places, and employers can adopt “drug-free workplace” policies that restrict the use of marijuana in the office.
- Recreational or adult marijuana dispensaries can open. The Arizona Department of Health Services will issue licenses for the dispensaries. Those interested should apply within the acceptance period from January 19- March 9, 2021. Some medical marijuana dispensaries can get recreational marijuana licenses to sell both medical and recreational marijuana from their dispensaries.
- Regulations for adult marijuana have to be established by April 5, 2021.
The law prohibits the sale of marijuana products that resemble an “animal, human, toy, insect or cartoon.
- The law also sets penalties for minors who are found in possession of marijuana. For a first offender in possession of under an ounce of marijuana, they get drug counseling and a $100 fine.
Impact of Proposition 207
The new marijuana law’s launch is expected to improve medical marijuana products, as it has done in many other marijuana approved states. It is expected to reduce the cost of medical marijuana and the annual medical marijuana card fee.
The new marijuana industry is also expected to create thousands of new jobs and generate a lot of money in annual revenue to improve the state.
Implementation of Arizona's Legal Marijuana Law
The new law’s implementation will have to wait until the Arizona Department of Health Services (AZDHS) completes the applicant licensing procedure that starts in January 2021.
The AZDHS has to approve drafts of adult use cannabis rules, which began in December, with the first draft released in the same month.
The AZDHS is currently in the process of accepting early applicants and will close the process on March 9, 2021. In the meantime, medical cannabis current holders applying for the recreational use license in the application process are authorized to have a dual-licensed dispensary, with both the medical and recreational use license. They are also required to have an offsite manufacturing facility and offsite cultivation.
Those with good standing with at least one Medical Marijuana Registration Certificate are among the first to be considered for the early adult use license applications, together with applicants applying to counties with no operating dispensaries.
Adult use licenses given to counties without a current active dispensary must keep the dispensary within the county.
Each application will be processed within 60 days by the AZDHS. Adult use licenses that are not yet awarded through the random selection process will be available to the public and allocated through the random selection process.
In the later phases of the SSAA implementation, the AZDHS, within six months of adopting the initial recreation rules, must develop and adopt rules for the Social Equity Ownership Program (SEOP).
The main goal of the SEOP is to hand out 26 recreational use licenses to communities that are impacted disproportionately by the criminalization of cannabis.
Weed Is Legal In Arizona, But Can You Grow It?
Yes! Prop 207 will allow all adults over the age of 21 to have up to six plants in their home. If you have two adults over thee age of 21 in the same household, the number of plants that can legally be grown is 12.
The combination of easy to grow, high yield seeds and an all in one grow tent kit will help you maximize the success of your first grow! Now that weed is legal in Arizona, growing your own plants will be a deeply satisfying experience.
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