The Norman Transcript

Nation/World

August 1, 2013

Marijuana legal in Uruguay

(Continued)

MONTEVIDEO, Uruguay —

Uruguay’s government would license growers, sellers and consumers, and update a confidential registry to keep people from buying more than 40 grams a month.

Carrying, growing or selling pot without a license could bring prison terms, but licensed consumers could grow up to six plants at a time at home.

Growing clubs with up to 45 members each would be encouraged, fostering enough marijuana production to drive out unlicensed dealers and draw a line between pot smokers and users of harder drugs.

The latest proposal “has some adjustments, aimed at strengthening the educational issue and prohibiting driving under the effects of cannabis,” Sabini said. “There will be self-growing clubs, and it will also be possible to buy marijuana in pharmacies” that is mass-produced by private companies.

An Institute for Regulation and Control of Cannabis would be created, with the power to grant licenses for all aspects of a legal industry to produce marijuana for recreational, medicinal or industrial use.

National Party Deputy Gerardo Amarilla, however, said the government is underestimating the risk of marijuana, which he called a “gateway drug” for other more addictive drugs that foster violent crimes.

“Ninety-eight percent of those who are today destroying themselves with base cocaine began with marijuana,” he said. “I believe that we’re risking too much. I have the sensation that we’re playing with fire.”

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