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Letter to the Editor: HB 457 negates will of voters

Letter to the Editor: HB 457 negates will of voters

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During the 2020 election, Montana voters approved I-190, legalizing and taxing marijuana for adult use. On the Montana ballot, I-190 passed with 56.9% of the vote, the most popular initiative this year. Montana voters strongly support individual freedoms, new business markets, and the right to choose for themselves.

House Bill 457 is a shameless attempt to delay the choice of Montana’s voters. It adds arbitrarily waiting an additional year before taking action on Montana’s most broadly supported ballot result. Not only does this delay implementation efforts and the hard work of our state government and law enforcement preparing for these changes, it disregards the language voters agreed to.

This bill ties the hands of the Department of Revenue, preventing them from accepting and beginning to process applications until January of 2023. Montana didn’t resoundingly support marijuana legalization in two years; we voted to get started right away. The three edits proposed to I-190 implementation by HB 457 make no substantive addition or valuable change: they only exist to further deny Montanans the results of their majority vote. Call your representative in Helena to oppose HB 457 and support the voice of Montana.

Tor Gudmundson

Corvallis

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