California companies and their allies are contemplating a statewide ballot initiative to make the world’s largest cannabis market more business friendly. Since REC went on sale in January 2018, the industry has had to deal with high taxes, complex regulations and other hurdles which executives say have held back the legal market and empowered unlicensed operators. 

  • Veterans group Weed for Warriors has been circulating a draft ballot initiative to companies, unions, politicians and others.
  • The proposal would remove local control of licensing to make legal product available far more widely, eliminate cultivation taxes, lower the excise tax and other measures.
  • Weed for Warriors executive director Sean Kiernan says the ballot could target 2022 — a mid-term election when passage would be a heavier lift — or 2024. 
  • He estimates the signature gathering would cost $8M and a winning campaign would require an additional $20M – $30M.