Jul 6, 2011 11:18 PM by Gene Cotton

Colorado pot campaign starts Thursday

DENVER (AP) - A state board has given final clearance for the language of a ballot proposal that would legalize marijuana for recreational use in Colorado.

Activists plan to begin gathering petitions Thursday afternoon to put the question on ballots next year.

The constitutional amendment would set up a direct conflict with federal drug law, which bans marijuana. Supporters point out that federal law bans pot for medical use, too, but 16 states now allow medical pot.

Supporters anticipate no trouble getting the measure on ballots. They need about 86,000 valid signatures, one of the nation's lowest thresholds.

Colorado voters rejected a pot legalization question in 2006.

The new version directs state lawmakers to add an excise tax of up to 15 percent on recreational pot, in addition to sales taxes.



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