ISSUES
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ADULT USE CANNABIS

Cliff Hart supports adult-use cannabis in Arkansas.

A great majority of Arkansans support adult use of cannabis. Arkansas True Grass Recreational Amendment of 2022.

  • Legalize adult use cannabis via a state constitutional amendment.

  • Allows Arkansans to buy or grow up to 12 plants per household.

  • Expunge all prior cannabis convictions/charges.

  • This amendment proposes an 8% state tax, 5% local tax.

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Hello, I'm Cliff Hart and I have long envisioned and now call for my Arkansas Revenue Generator Program which will MOVE Arkansas up the economic ladder from the bottom rung of U.S. states to the top tier of U.S. states enjoying long-term economic success.

I support passing adult-use cannabis legislation in order to permanently stimulate and grow Arkansas's economy and produce a permanent state tax revenue stream benefiting the people of Arkansas.

Currently, cannabis in Arkansas is illegal for recreational use. First-time possession of up to four ounces (110 g) is punished with a fine of up to $2,500, imprisonment of up to a year, and a mandatory six month driver's license suspension

I support the legalization of adult-use cannabis and the categorical expungement of all past, prior cannabis possession convictions. Legalizing recreational cannabis will put Arkansas on a level-playing field with many U.S. states who already legalized recreational and medical cannabis and now enjoy permanent, major cannabis state tax revenue streams previously unknown to those states.

I applaud Arkansas True Grass for creating their adult-use amendment especially the individual's right to grow and possess cannabis plants. It is essential Arkansas institute a constitutional right to grow cannabis lest individuals and business owners may face federal jeopardy. Colorado voters constitutionalized a person's right to grow and possess cannabis plants and as such, has suffered no such federal legal trouble regarding cannabis grows.

Colorado's population of 6 million people purchase over a billion dollars in cannabis products annually, producing approximately $350 million in permanent non-seasonal state tax revenue.

Ultimately, Arkansas' population of 3 million could purchase half a billion dollars of cannabis products annually, potentially producing $175-200 million in permanent, annual Arkansas state tax revenue.

If the recreational use amendment is passed, I support codifying into law a cannabis revenue program to fund building new Arkansas schools and fund Arkansas's education needs.

I support tried and true methods of state revenue generation including adult use cannabis sales tax, medical cannabis sales tax, cbd sales tax, cannabis food products sales tax and general cannabis-related products sales tax.

Moreover, I support using cannabis revenue to reduce property taxes for homeowners.

Further, I call for the implementation of a hemp container products industry that will fill the national need for biodegradable hemp products across the USA and Arkansas, making Arkansas the Number #1 exporter of hemp containers and hemp products in America, permanently moving Arkansas UP the U.S. economic ladder.

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INDUSTRIAL HEMP PRODUCTION

Cliff Hart supports industrial hemp production in the State of Arkansas

Arkansas business entrepreneurs have a golden opportunity to produce and sell hemp products here in Arkansas and nationwide. Arkansas farmers need retail entrepreneurs who will use Arkansas-grown hemp as their source material.

 

There is great demand and use for hemp-based products including biodegradable containers and bags, as well as building materials and CBD.

 

Many states have outlawed petroleum-based plastic bags in favor of biodegradable plastic bags.

 

Container producers who made the switch from petroleum-based products to hemp-based products utilize the same type plastic mold injection machinery and equipment to produce a range of biodegradable products.

I support tax breaks for hemp growers and entrepreneurs who produce and sell hemp-based products.

California hemp grower uses cotton gin to process hemp.

  • According to federal law, the sale and consumption of hemp-derived CBD products are legal in Arkansas, provided that the products meet the conditions stated in the 2018 Farm Bill

  • The Arkansas State Plant Board (ASPB) requires hemp producers to have a license before cultivating and selling raw hemp and its byproducts.

  • Consumers in Arkansas can buy CBD without a prescription, on the condition that these products contain no more than 0.3% THC.

  • People can purchase cannabidiol from physical dispensaries and online shops. CBD retailers are in every community in the state.

History of Arkansas Cannabis Legislation

Failed medical cannabis initiative (2012)

In 2012, the Arkansas Medical Marijuana Act (Issue 5) qualified for vote on the statewide ballot. The act would have allowed non-profit organizations to grow and sell medical cannabis and additionally permitted patients who live over five miles from a legal dispensary to cultivate a small number of plants on their own property. The act was defeated by a vote of 48.6% to 51.4%.

Arkansas Medical Marijuana Amendment (2016)

On November 8, 2016, Arkansas voters approved Issue 6, the Arkansas Medical Marijuana Amendment, to legalize the medical use of cannabis. A separate measure, the Arkansas Medical Cannabis Act (Issue 7), was disqualified from the ballot 12 days before the election by the Arkansas Supreme Court.

The Arkansas Medical Marijuana Amendment passed by a vote of 53%–47% as an amendment to the state constitution. It allows patients who obtain a doctor's recommendation to possess up to 2+1⁄2 ounces (71 g) of cannabis for the treatment of any of 12 qualifying medical conditions. It also requires that between 20 and 40 cannabis dispensaries and 4 to 8 cultivators be licensed by the state. No allowance was made for patients to cultivate at home.

Licensed sales did not begin until May 2019 when the first dispensary opened in Hot Springs. The dispensary was one of 32 initially licensed by the state along with 5 cultivators.

 

Municipal Reforms

In 2006, Eureka Springs residents voted 64%–36% to make enforcement of cannabis laws the lowest police priority.

 

Fayetteville residents approved a similar initiative in 2008 by a 62%–38% margin.

In 2021, the Little Rock Board of Directors voted 7–3 to require that "investigations, citations, arrests, property seizures, etc. for adult misdemeanor marijuana offenses" be made the lowest law enforcement and prosecutorial priority when the amount of cannabis is deemed to be for personal use.

Cannabis Moving Forward: Arkansas Recreational Marijuana Amendment of 2022  

An organization called ARKANSAS TRUE GRASS is gathering signatures to put recreational marijuana on the ballot for the 2022 election. Under the proposed amendment recreational marijuana would be legal and regulated by the Arkansas Agriculture Dept. and render all prior convictions of marijuana crimes null and void. In addition, Arkansans would be allowed to buy or grow up to 12 plants in their home. The deadline to get it on the ballot is July 2022.

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ECONOMIC GROWTH: ARKANSAS REVENUE GENERATOR

Cliff Hart has a real plan for long-term economic growth in Arkansas.

I have a vision of Arkansas being elevated to the top tier of America's most successful state economies. My campaign believes a development of a revenue stream to help fund better education and nonjudgmental addiction treatment programs is the ultimate goal. My plan of industrial and commercial hemp production and an adult use cannabis policy will provide Arkansas with the means to achieve better economic outcomes for everyone. 

Arkansas' economy has had little success for decades. Since the Great Depression, Arkansas has remained in an economic stagnation from low worker pay, to consistently ranking near the top in America's list of states with the worst economies.

Arkansas has spent too many decades behind other states who enjoy bold, robust state economies for the 21st century. I recognize good business practice when I see it and Colorado's cannabis revenue program inspired me to create a successful cannabis revenue program for Arkansas solidly based on Colorado's proven multi-billion dollar cannabis revenue program.

the colorado model

Arkansas doesn't have to re-invent the wheel to produce and enjoy a successful statewide cannabis revenue program producing hundreds of millions in annual state tax revenue funds. Arkansas (3m) has a population approximately one half of the state population of Colorado (6m), which is to say if properly implemented, Arkansas could enjoy approximately half the amount of cannabis revenue Colorado has enjoyed for a very long time.

In November, Colorado dispensaries sold $175.1 million worth of products, according to figures released by the Department of Revenue on Tuesday. Recreational sales accounted for about $140.5 million, while medical sales accounted for nearly $34.7 million, the agency reported.

Colorado collected nearly $32.4 million in taxes and fees in November.

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Colorado's population of 6 million purchases over a billion dollars in cannabis products annually, producing approximately $350 million in permanent non-seasonal state tax revenue.

Ultimately, Arkansas' population of 3 million could purchase half a billion dollars of cannabis products annually, potentially producing $175-200 million in permanent, annual Arkansas state tax revenue.

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Michael McGraw, production manager, wearing protective clothing and hair and face netting, shows off the perfect leaf of a marijuana plant while he works in the flowering room at the LivWell Enlightened Health cultivation facility on Jan. 13, 2020 in Denver.