Kelda Roys

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Kelda Roys

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1. Do you support a legal, regulated, and taxed market for recreational cannabis, allowing Wisconsin residents over the age of 21 to purchase and possess up to two ounces (or more) of cannabis from regulated dispensaries, as proposed by State Rep. Melissa Sargent’s (D-Madison) AB482?


2. Do you support allowing any Wisconsin resident over the age of 21 to grow up to 6 (or more) cannabis plants at home without a license, as proposed by AB482?


3. Do you support allowing patients suffering from various ailments to purchase and use cannabis as treatment for their ailments if they have a doctor’s recommendation?


4. Do you agree with the qualifying conditions for medical cannabis outlined in Section 42 of AB482 (listed below)?
(2) “Debilitating medical condition or treatment" means any of the following:
(a) Cancer; glaucoma; acquired immunodeficiency syndrome; a positive test for the presence of HIV, antigen or nonantigenic products of HIV, or an antibody to HIV; Crohn's disease; a hepatitis C virus infection; Alzheimer's disease; amyotrophic lateral sclerosis; nail patella syndrome; Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome; post-traumatic stress disorder; or the treatment of these conditions.
(b) A chronic or debilitating disease or medical condition or the treatment of such a disease or condition that causes cachexia, severe pain, severe nausea, seizures, including those characteristic of epilepsy, or severe and persistent muscle spasms, including those characteristic of multiple sclerosis.
(c) Any other medical condition or any other treatment for a medical condition designated as a debilitating medical condition or treatment in rules promulgated by the department of health services under s. 50.81 (2).


5. Answer this question only if you support both recreational and medicinal uses of cannabis. Do you support allowing medical cannabis patients to possess more cannabis than recreational users and to be exempt from the taxes that are imposed on recreational users?


6. Do you support a permitting system that would enable publicly-accessible establishments to allow legal possessors of cannabis to smoke it in outdoor areas at their establishments? This would address an issue present in other states’ implementations, where many people are legally allowed to purchase and possess cannabis, but have no place to legally consume it.

Yes, I could support that, provided that the current smoking ban stays intact. People in bars and restaurants, and entering buildings like schools, clinics, and offices, should not have to contend with secondhand smoke of any kind. There are currently some exceptions (like cigar bars), so I can see allowing that type of regulation for cannabis.

7. Do you support conviction expungement or pardons for anyone convicted of possession, growing, and/or selling cannabis in Wisconsin?


8. Do you support or would you consider any other cannabis regulatory or legalization scheme for Wisconsin

Licenses will be based on lottery and issued to bona fide residents of the state for at least 2 years. Wisconsin-based small businesses and entrepreneurs from traditionally underrepresented groups will be prioritized.

9. Do you believe that possession of limited amounts of cannabis by a person in his or her own home or in another’s home with the owner’s permission should be legal in the State of Wisconsin?


10. What level of taxes do you think should be imposed on recreational cannabis?

While I am not prepared to commit to a particular number without the context of an entire budget, I would look at Wisconsin’s current tobacco and alcohol taxes, as well as the tax schemes in other states with legal cannabis, and confer with citizen organizations to design and implement a reasonable tax and regulatory scheme in Wisconsin.

11. How do you think that tax revenue should be used?

Cannabis tax revenue should be used to prevent and treat substance use disorder, and in particular to combat the opioid crisis. Education, training, mental healthcare provision, diversion/treatment programs, harm reduction – all of these are important components of addressing substance use disorders, and I would prioritize them as governor. Interestingly, there is some evidence that states with legal cannabis have lower opioid addiction rates, because patients needing palliative care can get pain relief from cannabis without the danger of addiction from an opioid prescription.

12. Why is cannabis law reform an important issue to you?
Cannabis reform is extremely important to me as an issue of personal freedom and public priorities. Adults should be free to use marijuana just like we can buy lottery tickets, have a beer, or smoke a cigarette – the state shouldn’t interfere with personal freedom unless there is serious public harm involved (as there is with opioids, for instance, or OWI). We should not spend our scarce public resources criminalizing a substance that is, by many accounts, less harmful than alcohol. Moreover, Wisconsin’s criminal justice system has the worst racial disparities in the nation – we incarcerate a higher percentage of people of color per capita than any other state. This is a moral outrage, and the so-called “war on drugs” is partially to blame. While few people are in prison solely for marijuana possession, we must end the mindset that addresses substance abuse as a criminal justice matter – it should be treated in the public health realm.
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