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Everything You Need to Know About Georgia’s Marijuana Bill

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at UGA chapter.

This year, 15 states in the U.S. have written bills for the potential legalization of marijuana; all with unique terms and conditions. Our own state of Georgia has now jumped on the highly controversial bandwagon with the 26-page SB 198 (Senate Bill 198) rightly named ‘Georgia Retail Marijuana Code.’ This amends Title 43 of The Official Code of Georgia Annotated and provides a detailed description of the exact rules and regulations that would be put into place assuming this bill passes.

Initially one would assume that a bill such as this would include the rights of individuals to use marijuana at their own leisure, possibly even public use. However, the various clauses mainly account for the regulation of the retail sale of marijuana. It provides for certain licensing restrictions and requirements that would apply to businesses and possibly even franchises while simultaneously including penalties for improper practices. If stores were granted the ability to distribute marijuana products, they would be responsible for a heavy load of paperwork and other logistics determined by the state. SB 198 additionally calls for the regulation of cultivation and production of marijuana, possibly putting larger and smaller farms in an interesting position of power.

The bill will become effective January 1st of 2017 if it is ratified at the November 2016 general election of Georgia. An interesting portion of this bill provides for the tax revenue of marijuana sales to be distributed to education and transportation infrastructure. This will hopefully quell the minds of marijuana legalization opponents and provide better support for the pending passing of the bill. 

Third-year student at UGA double majoring in Germanic & Slavic Languages and Communications Studies. I adore all things beauty and fashion and have been devouring magazines and beauty blogs for as long as I can remember. Language and culture are my passion and I hope to one day combine my interests into an exciting and fulfilling career!
Danielle is a senior at the University of Georgia majoring in English and minoring in Sociology. You can usually find her dividing her time between being Campus Correspondent of Her Campus UGA, binge-watching Grey's Anatomy on Netflix and daydreaming about being one of Beyonce's backup dancers. If you want to know more about Danielle, you can follow her on Instagram (@danielleknecole_) or Twitter (@DanielleKnecole).