Arizona: 4th of July Themed Billboard Highlights Benefits of Marijuana Legalization

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Backers of the ballot initiative to end marijuana prohibition in Arizona have launched an Independence Day-themed billboard to highlight the benefits of regulating and taxing marijuana.

“If Arizona regulates marijuana,” the billboard reads, “adults could buy American,” instead of buying marijuana that has been illegally smuggled across the Mexican border into Arizona. The ad also notes that revenue from regulated marijuana sales would “support schools, not cartels.”

The proposed initiative would initially generate an estimated $64 million in annual tax revenue, including $51 million for K-12 education and all-day kindergarten programs, according to an independent study conducted by the Grand Canyon Institute.

Campaign leaders will hold a news conference on Tuesday, June 28, at 10 a.m. in front of the billboard, where they will be joined by Michael Capasso, a 23-year veteran of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) who supports the initiative to regulate marijuana in Arizona. During his time at the DEA, Capasso spearheaded a task force targeting Mexican-based cartels trafficking drugs into the U.S. and directed operations at one of the DEA’s front-line posts along the U.S.-Mexico border. He retired in 2015 after serving more than three and a half years as Financial Crimes Unit Chief.