The legalization of recreational marijuana will be on the ballot in November and is likely to pass. Michigan United will not be taking a position on this ballot initiative.
Regardless of how one feels about the pros and cons of legalization, this new law will provide an unprecedented windfall to Michigan's cities. One third of the new taxes will go to cities, in proportion to the amount of marijuana sold in that jurisdiction. For a city like Detroit, this could mean $10 million - $20 million per year in new revenue.
These new dollars could go to corporate tax breaks or new jail cells if we accept the status quo.
What if instead we dreamed of something bigger? Could we convene a coalition of community leaders to demand that this new revenue be set aside to make game-changing investments to eliminate poverty?
Some possibilities include:-Eliminating the scourge of adult illiteracy that hobbles workers from advancing their careers-Creating a Green Jobs corps to put our region on the forefront of sustainability and climate resilience-Providing job training in the skilled trades and the tech sector -Providing treatment for all those who suffer from addiction
Please join a discussion at the Michigan United leadership lunch to discuss if this is a direction we should pursue.