Monday - July 17, 2017 9:03 am

Legalizing pot could solve Wisconsin's road woes

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It may sound crazy on the surface. And it no doubt is a longshot. But it also may be the answer to a number of problems in Wisconsin. Rep. Melissa Sargent has introduced legislation calling for the legalization of marijuana in the state. Not just medicinal marijuana, but full-blown recreational use of pot. Sargent has introduced similar bills in the previous two legislative sessions. Both failed to get so much as a hearing. With republicans firmly in control in Madison, this bill, although introduced, likely will again not be given a hearing. There will be no opportunity for lawmakers to even discuss it. But why not? As we have seen in Colorado and elsewhere, legalized pot is big business. That means money for the state coffers. Lots of money. Last year, Colorado collected $200 million in tax revenue from marijuana sales. Wisconsin collected $0. With Wisconsin lawmakers hopelessly stuck on how to plug the hole in the state’s growing transportation budget deficit, $200 million would provide a lot of solutions. This is more than just changing the law. It is a huge economic stimulus package. Attitudes have changed about pot. The latest Marquette Law School poll shows 59% of Wisconsinites favor legalizing recreational marijuana use. Then why won’t our elected officials even be willing to talk about it?

Scott Robert Shaw

Scott Robert Shaw is the Program Director for both 1410 WIZM and 580 WKTY.   He's currently the morning news anchor on 1410 WIZM, Z93 and 95-7 The Rock.  He joined Mid-West Family Broadcasting as a reporter/anchor in 1989 and served as News Director from 1990-2015.   He's been the winner of several Wisconsin Broadcaster's Association awards for Best Editorial in Wisconsin.  He enjoys traveling, bicycling and cooking.

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