Section 1: Name

This Act shall be known as the "Regulate, Control and Tax Cannabis Act of 2010."

Section 2: Findings, Intent and Purposes

This Act, adopted by the People of the State of California, makes the following Findings and Statement of Intent and Purpose:

A. Findings

1. California's laws criminalizing cannabis (marijuana) have failed and need to be reformed. Despite spending decades arresting millions of non-violent cannabis consumers, we have failed to control cannabis or reduce its availability.

2. According to surveys, roughly 100 million Americans (around 1/3 of the country's population) acknowledge that they have used cannabis, 15 million of those Americans having consumed cannabis in the last month. Cannabis consumption is simply a fact of life for a large percentage of Americans.

3. Despite having some of the strictest cannabis laws in the world, the United States has the largest number of cannabis consumers. The percentage of our citizens who consume cannabis is double that of the percentage of people who consume cannabis in the Netherlands, a country where the selling and adult possession of cannabis is allowed.

4. According to The National Research Council's recent study of the 11 U.S. states where cannabis is currently decriminalized, there is little apparent relationship between severity of sanctions and the rate of consumption.

5. Cannabis has fewer harmful effects than either alcohol or cigarettes, which are both legal for adult consumption. Cannabis is not physically addictive, does not have long term toxic effects on the body, and does not cause its consumers to become violent.

6. There is an estimated $15 billion in illegal cannabis transactions in California each year. Taxing and regulating cannabis, like we do with alcohol and cigarettes, will generate billions of dollars in annual revenues for California to fund what matters most to Californians: jobs, health care, schools and libraries, roads, and more.

7. California wastes millions of dollars a year targeting, arresting, trying, convicting, and imprisoning non-violent citizens for cannabis related offenses. This money would be better used to combat violent crimes and gangs.

8. The illegality of cannabis enables for the continuation of an out-of-control criminal market, which in turn spawns other illegal and often violent activities. Establishing legal, regulated sales outlets would put dangerous street dealers out of business.

B. Purposes

1. Reform California's cannabis laws in a way that will benefit our state.

2. Regulate cannabis like we do alcohol: Allow adults to possess and consume small amounts of cannabis.

3. Implement a legal regulatory framework to give California more control over the cultivation, processing, transportation, distribution, and sales of cannabis.

4. Implement a legal regulatory framework to better police and prevent access to and consumption of cannabis by minors in California.

5. Put dangerous, underground street dealers out of business, so their influence in our communities will fade.