Highlights of MPP’s Nevada Marijuana Legalization Initiative (NV-CRMLA)


We’ve already taken a look at the freshly amended California legalization initiative from Napster billionaire Sean Parker. With those 35,000+ words out of the way, today let’s look at the far shorter 5,000+ words of Marijuana Policy Project’s (MPP) Nevada marijuana legalization initiative, marketed under the Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol (CRMLA). It is already on the ballot for 2016 in Nevada; this will be voted on come November 8.

Personal Possession and Cultivation:  A person 21 or older may possess an ounce of flower or an eighth-ounce of concentrate. While CRMLA allows adults to cultivate six cannabis plants and have up to 12 plants per residence, that is only if the plants are grown more than 25 miles away from a licensed pot shop. (A similar prohibition for medical marijuana home grows in Arizona has resulted in almost every Arizonan living where they have no home grow rights.) CRMLA mandates misdemeanors for such illegal home grows with $600 and $1,000 fines, respectively, for first and second offenses; a gross misdemeanor with a possible year in jail and $2,000 fine for the third offense, and a category E felony for a fourth offense, which includes a mandatory minimum of one year in prison and a possible maximum of four years.

Public Toking: Anybody caught toking in public or in a moving vehicle gets a misdemeanor with a $600 fine. However, localities might be able to allow pot lounges, if the legislature provides for that.

Commercial Marijuana: There will be grow licenses costing $30,000, with $10,000 to renew; store licenses at $20,000, with $6,600 to renew; tester or distributor licenses at $15,000, with $5,000 to renew; and manufacturer licenses at $10,000, with $3,300 to renew. All licenses cost a $5,000 non-refundable fee. Marijuana will be subject to a 15 percent excise tax paid by the growers, based on the fair market value of wholesale marijuana as determined by the state.

Retail Shops: There can be up to 80 pot shops in Las Vegas’ Clark County, up to 20 in Reno’s Washoe County, up to 4 in Carson City, and up to 2 in each of Nevada’s remaining counties, though the state can approve a county’s request to be allowed more. No licensee can be within 1,000 feet of a school or 300 feet of a community center.

Tax Revenues: Windfall from marijuana fees and taxes pay off state and local regulatory expenses first, then the rest goes to an education fund within the state general fund.

Criminal Backgrounds: A class A felony or two of any felonies on your record in the past ten years will disqualify you from getting a commercial marijuana license.

Medical Marijuana: Nevada’s medical marijuana laws are to be unaffected by CRMLA. Medical marijuana dispensaries and commercial pot shops can be co-located. For the first eighteen months of licensing, only the medical marijuana cultivators, manufacturers, and retailers will be able to apply for commercial cultivator, manufacturer, and retailer licenses. During that same period, only licensed liquor distributors will be able to apply for distributor licenses.

Per se DUID: CRMLA makes no changes to Nevada’s existing DUID law, where 2ng of THC in blood or 15ng of metabolites in urine proves guilt automatically, with a mandatory 2 days in jail or 48 hours community service.

Housing: Landlords can ban everything except personal possession and non-smoked consumption. Technically, they’re allowed to ban the “transfer” in their properties, which means landlords can ban you from sharing a joint with someone in your apartment.

Boy, I’ll bet the people in California who are hating the Sean Parker Initiative because it “only” allows home grows of 6 plants per household and institutes a $250 open container infraction will have plenty to say about a 25-mile no-home-grow halo rule and a $600 public toking misdemeanor in the nearby Nevada marijuana legalization initiative.

Russ Belville

"Radical" Russ Belville is a blogger, podcaster, and host of The Russ Belville Show, a daily two-hour talk radio show focused on the evolution of the legal marijuana industry in the United States. The program is airing live at 3pm Pacific Time from Portland, Oregon, on CannabisRadio.com, with podcast available on iTunes and Stitcher Radio. Russ began his marijuana activism in 2005 with Oregon NORML, then in 2009 went on to work for National NORML, and found and direct Portland NORML.in 2015.