Cincinnati attorney Scott Greenwood, the general counsel of the American Civil Liberties Union, and former police chief Tom Streicher today endorsed a proposal to amend the Ohio Constitution to legalize marijuana.
The two are partners in Greenwood Streicher LLC, a consulting company that focuses on government accountability and policing solutions.
Neither is an investor in the 10 companies that would be awarded marijuana farms if the proposal makes it onto the Nov. 3 ballot and wins the approval of voters, according to ResponsibleOhio, the political action committee leading the effort.
“Both Tom Streicher and Scott Greenwood have spent their careers working to make Ohio a safer, more just state,” said Ian James, executive director of ResponsibleOhio. “They’ve looked critically at our amendment, and with today’s endorsement, they’ve taken a strong stand against Ohio’s failed marijuana prohibition.”
The proposal would legalize marijuana for medical use by adults and children who have parental permission as well as for personal use by Ohioans 21 or older.
Greenwood said Ohio’s pot laws discriminate based on race.
“Black Ohioans are four times more likely to be arrested for marijuana than white Ohioans, even though both groups use marijuana at the same rate,” Greenwood said. “Justice is not applied evenly in our state. But with ResponsibleOhio’s amendment, we have the chance to make desperately needed change.”
Streicher, who was chief of the Cincinnati Police Department 1999-2011, said Ohio’s marijuana laws don’t work.
“Law enforcement should instead be able to spend their time and their resources cracking down on the real criminals,” Streicher said. “ResponsibleOhio’s amendment will do just that, paving the way for a better, safer future for our children and grandchildren.”
To fund the $20 million campaign, 10 investment groups ponied up $2 million apiece. Each company has budgeted an additional $2 million to cover land acquisition and other needs that might arise after Election Day.
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