Connecticut is pursuing an initiative to prioritize the black and brown communities in distributing business licenses for recreational marijuana. This states that state leaders can help correct historic fraud.
Democratic Governor Ned Lamont convened the first meeting of the state’s Council of Social Justice on Thursday. This helps determine who can participate in the legitimate weed cannabis.
Connecticut became the 19th state to legalize recreational marijuana last month and is expected to go on sale in July next year, requiring measures to prioritize the most hit communities in the drug war. ..
“We will finally have a way to create wealth within the black and brown community. WTNH-TV was the first meeting of the council, Joseph Williams of the UConn Small Business Development Center said. I think it’s a real opportunity to see 40 acres and our ancestral mules.
The Connecticut Council for Social Equity met Thursday to begin setting rules on who will be prioritized in licensing newly legalized recreational marijuana.
Democratic Governor Ned Lamont vowed to “break down the barriers of many black and brown people who were traditionally and unfairly not given table seats.”
The map shows Connecticut’s “Disproportionately Affected Community” approved by the Social Equity Council on marijuana dispensing license priorities.
40 acres and mules: Abraham Lincoln’s promise to former slaves
The concept of “40 acres and mules” dates back to the Civil War, where land was proposed as a form of compensation for the liberated former slaves.
In January 1865, General William T. Sherman issued Special Field Order No. 15 confiscating the 400,000 acres of coastline from Charleston, South Carolina to the St. Johns River, Florida.
Sherman acted under the authority of President Abraham Lincoln after consulting with Secretary of the Army Edwin M. Stanton and key members of the black community.
The seized land, including the Sea Islands of Georgia and the mainland 30 miles from the coast, was to be distributed to former slaves on up to 40 acres per family.
Harper’s Weekly’s illustration depicts the Freedmen’s Bureau, which was tasked with managing land grants before the plan was overturned.
The order did not mention mules, but the shaman later allowed the Army to lend mules to freedmen, creating the concept.
Sherman’s order further stated that “on the islands and in upcoming settlements, whites are not allowed to reside unless military officers and soldiers detail their mission,” and “only and exclusive. Management. ” The case will be left to the liberated people themselves. “
But the plan was short-lived. In the fall of 1865, after the war ended and President Lincoln was assassinated, President Andrew Johnson overturned Sherman’s orders.
Democrat Johnson, who sympathized with the South, returned most of the land to the confiscated Southern planters.
The original 40-acre and mule plans did not bring any benefit to the former black slaves, but they have helped stimulate many claims for compensation over the years.
The phrase “40 acres and mules” refers to the post-Civil War proposal to give land to liberated slaves as a form of compensation. Such a program was carried out under President Abraham Lincoln, but was overturned by his successor Andrew Johnson.
In Connecticut, the goal of the Council of Social Fairness is to ensure that some of the economic benefits of legitimate weeds reach communities that have been disproportionately affected by weed bans.
“I grew up in one of those disproportionately affected areas. Drugs devastated my family. Personally affected. I could easily be swallowed. There was sex, “council member Avery Gaddis told WVIT-TV.
At a meeting on Thursday, the council approved a map that designated 215 census tracks as “imbalance-affected areas” prioritized in the licensing process.
Together, tubes make up 23% of Connecticut’s population, but are responsible for 67% of historic drug convictions.
Priority areas were determined by identifying census zones, mostly black-populated urban areas, with past drug convictions or unemployment rates above 10%.
“I grew up in one of those disproportionately affected areas. Drugs devastated my family. I was personally affected,” said Avery Gaddis, a member of the council. Told WVIT-TV.
Connecticut became the 19th state to legalize recreational marijuana last month and is expected to go on sale in July next year.
In addition to living in one of these areas, social equity applicants need to earn less than 300% of Connecticut’s current median income, or about $ 114,000.
Under the new law, half of all cannabis licenses must be passed to equity applicants who can qualify for lower license fees, training, and financing to cover initial costs.
“It will cost about $ 40 million a year to join this social equity fund,” said Governor Lamont.
“Not all people come from the community, there are people who can go from friends and family. Well, we are your friends and family,” he added.
Under the new Cannabis Control Law, the Council of Social Justice must publicly publish the final list of qualifications for social justice applicants by September 1.
These priority applicants can start submitting the license form 30 days later, and non-equity companies can start applying 30 days later.
File photo of marijuana leaf wave flag outside Connecticut State Capitol
Connecticut is not the first state to mandate fairness requirements for the legalized weed industry.
Many other states have similar requirements, with California, Illinois, and Michigan being the most robust.
In Michigan, license fees for applicants living in “disproportionately affected communities” have been reduced, and like Connecticut, the state aims to pass at least half of all licenses to fair applicants. increase.
California supports cannabis license applicants with specific equity qualifications through loans, grants, and technical assistance.
Illinois gives equity applicants a significant number of points in recreational license assessments and is used by existing doctor license holders (all white men) to fund generous loans and grants to new equity competitors. We will charge a high fee.
Legalized Weeds and Fair Programs Throughout the United States
Nineteen states have legalized the sale of recreational weeds, many of which have some form of impartiality program for dispensing or farm licenses.
Colorado: Colorado, the first state to allow the sale of recreational weeds, did not include a specific equity program in its license, but used part of its cannabis tax revenue for homeless programs. The erasure program is pending.
Washington: Elimination of previous marijuana convictions is in effect.
Alaska: The erasure initiative is pending.
Oregon: There is no state-wide equity program, but Portland has reduced equity applicant fees.
California: Helps cannabis license applicants with specific equity qualifications through loans, grants, and technical assistance.
Main: The erasure initiative is pending.
Massachusetts: The Cannabis Commission has stated that it will provide training and priority licenses to applicants who have been disproportionately affected by drug arrests.
Nevada: A valid erasure initiative.
Michigan: License fees for applicants living in disproportionately affected communities will be reduced. The state aims to pass at least 50 percent of its licenses to stock applicants.
Vermont: A valid erasure initiative.
Illinois: Gives equity applicants a significant number of points in the evaluation of recreational licenses. Taxes physician license holders to fund equity recreation licensee grants.
Arizona: Priority license for communities “disproportionately affected” by the war on drugs.
Montana: De facto erasure.
New Jersey: De facto erasure.
South Dakota: Erasure is pending.
New York: Equity license application priorities. Half of all licenses will be allocated to equity applicants and 40% of tax revenue will go to community grants.
Virginia: Priority of stock applicants, including those previously convicted of marijuana.
New Mexico: Equity Applicant Priority.
Connecticut: Equity license application priorities. Half of all licenses will be sent to equity applicants.
Connecticut plans to prioritize the black community in the legalized marijuana industry
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