Proposition 19 In Short

by admin on October 13, 2022

There are strong opinions on both sides of the proposed legalization of marijuana in the state of California. What follows is a run-down of what the act proposes to legalize and what it will continue to prohibit.

Proposition 19, or the Regulate, Control and Tax Cannabis Act of 2010 as it is formally known, is a measure that will be included in a state-wide California ballot, due to be held on November 2, 2010. The measure proposes various instruments to control activities relating in one way or another to cannabis, or marijuana, namely:

1. it legalizes various marijuana-related activities;
2. it allows local government to regulate such activities;
3. it permits local government to impose and collect marijuana-related fees and taxes; and
4. it authorizes various criminal and civil penalties.

1. Legalization of Marijuana-Related Activities

The proposal would allow a person over the age of 21 to engage in “personal consumption” of marijuana in a “non-public place”. More specifically, it would allow possession, procession and transport of up to one ounce of marijuana; as well as the cultivation of up to 25 square feet of marijuana on private property.

Although the directive clearly differentiates between personal use and selling marijuana, it is proposed that selling to a public establishment that is licensed for marijuana consumption is permitted.

The measure prohibits smoking marijuana in the presence of a minor, and by the driver of a motor vehicle.

2. Local Government Regulation of Commercial Production and Sale

Local government is under the measure allowed to adopt ordinances and regulations that regard the cultivation, processing, distribution, transportation, sale or possession for sale of marijuana.

Under this measure public establishments can apply to local government to become licensed to sell up to one ounce of marijuana to persons over the age of 21. The location, size, hours of operation, signs and displays of such establishment would be regulated by local government.

The measure prohibits any transport between states or across country borders.

3. Imposition and Collection of Taxes and Fees

Local government can under the measure impose general, excise or transfer taxes on authorized marijuana-related activities.

The purpose of collecting such taxes is to raise funds for local government to be able to offset any costs associated with marijuana regulation.

4. Authorization of Criminal and Civil Penalties

This measure does not amend existing criminal statutes that involve penalties for supplying marijuana to persons under the age of 18.

However, an individual who is licensed to engage in an authorized marijuana activity, and who is found to give or sell marijuana to a person under 21 will be banned from owning, operating or being employed by a marijuana licensed establishment for one year. In addition, such individual could face six months imprisonment and a $10,000 fine per offense.

Although legalizing marijuana-related activities, the measure retains employers’ existing rights to address on-the-job marijuana consumption.

This summary does not provide full details of the proposed Regulate, Control and Tax Cannabis Act of 2010. For more information please visit:


Legislative Analyst’s Office (Sept. 9, 2009) Retrieved 13 Oct, 2010 from

Leave a Comment