(PHOENIX) – The Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce announces its opposition to the passage of Arizona’s Regulation and Taxation of Marijuana Act. The proposed measure would legalize the possession and consumption of marijuana for recreational purposes by individuals who are 21 years of age or older.
The measure would:
- establish a 15 percent tax to be levied on retail marijuana sales, from which the revenue will be allocated to public health and education;
- allow adults 21 years of age and older to possess, privately consume and grow limited amounts of marijuana;
- create a system in which licensed businesses can produce and sell marijuana;
- establish a Department of Marijuana Licenses and Control to regulate the cultivation, manufacturing, testing, transportation and sale of marijuana; and
- provide local governments with the authority to regulate and limit marijuana businesses.
“This measure would cause significant ambiguity for businesses to regulate a drug-free workplace,” said Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce Vice President of Public Affairs Mike Huckins. “In addition to the social-economic downside of marijuana legalization, this is not in the best interest of Valley businesses and Arizona as a whole.”
The prospect of employees under the influence of recreational marijuana use raises concerns for many employers, companies and industry sectors across the state. The passage of Arizona’s Regulation and Taxation of Marijuana Act would create a multitude of workforce issues including productivity, absenteeism, employee and workplace safety, as well as significant liability if an accident occurs on the job. In addition, the legalization of marijuana for recreational purposes would impact HR policies for all Arizona employers regarding drug use and would be detrimental for companies to maintain drug-free workplace policies.
“The passage of Arizona’s Regulation and Taxation of Marijuana Act would impact the business community negatively,” said Todd Sanders, president and CEO of the Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce. “This measure opens the door for employees across all industry sectors to potentially show up for work under the influence of marijuana, which does nothing towards creating a safer workforce, workplace and stronger business community.”
The Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce joins more than a dozen organizations in opposing the initiative including: United States Representative Franks; Maricopa County Supervisor Denny Barney and Arizona State Senator Bob Worsley; 45 Arizona city and municipal leaders; four former Arizona state superintendents; the Arizona Chamber of Commerce and Industry; the American Medical Association; the American Academy of Pediatrics; the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry; the American Cancer Society; and as a recent poll shows, a majority of Arizona voters.
About Arizonans for Responsible Drug Policy
The Arizonans for Responsible Drug Policy PAC was formed to actively oppose any initiative that would legalize the recreational use of the drug marijuana in the state of Arizona. Visit www.ardp.org for more information. Paid for by Arizonans for Responsible Drug Policy. Major funding by Empire Southwest LLC, Arizona Chamber of Commerce Industry, Jim Click Automotive Team, and CopperPoint Insurance Companies.