About the Maine Marijuana Project Initiative The Maine Marijuana Policy Initiative is a new organization begun in April, 2006. Our mission is to work with the people of Maine to decriminalize marijuana and replace incarceration with a system of taxation and regulation by local governments. The creation of such a system will have a number of positive effects on our communities such as: 1. Creating a revenue stream that local communities can use for projects that are important to its residents 2. Ending the wasteful utilization of law enforcement resources on a failed "war on drugs" 3. Stopping the ruination of individuals' lives caught up in the criminal justice system through their involvement in the purchase or sale of marijuana We believe that conditions are ideal in Maine to move forward with a campaign to decriminalize, tax, and regulate marijuana. As the economics of Maine and the world change we must always be considering other ways to effectively fund vital areas that keep a community healthy, such as education, public-works projects, farmers markets, protection of open space for hunting and fishing, sustainable harvesting of our forests, etc. With marijuana being the number one cash crop in the state, a system of taxation and regulation could bring much needed revenues to cash-strapped local governments and help build a sustainable economic system. The state legislature has already passed medical marijuana legislation indicating some openness to addressing marijuana issues. In November 1999, Maine voters passed the Maine Medical Marijuana Initiative, Bill LD 2109, authorizing the legal use of marijuana for medical purposes. L.D. 611 that clarified protections for patients and caregivers followed this. It is also estimated that 65% of Maine's citizens between ages 26Ã£34 have used cannabis providing a level of familiarity with the issue for a large number of residents. Approximately 95,000 Maine adults now use marijuana on a routine basis. The state's residents also pride themselves on a strong independent streak and libertarian values as shown historically by Maine elected officials from the major parties at a national level such as Margaret Chase Smith (R) and George Mitchell (D). It is also the only state to re-elect a Green Party candidate to the statehouse. We call on citizens, businesses, organizations and leaders from all aspects of civil society to join us in calling for "Maine Common Sense", and the creation of a system for taxation and regulation of marijuana.