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Group: Legalized marijuana not smart for Arizona

PHOENIX — Voters in Colorado and Washington have approved the use of recreational marijuana, but the director of an Arizona anti-drug group said it would be a mistake to invoke a similar law.

The age-old argument for legalizing marijuana has been that, since people will continue to smoke pot, the state might as well tax it and make money off of it. Shelly Mowery with Drug Free AZ said that is shortsighted thinking.

“When you look at the impacts that marijuana use causes, the tax would pale in comparison to the health care costs and costs of auto crashes connected with impaired driving,” she said.

Mowery is unaware of any efforts under way at this time to push to legalize recreational marijuana use in Arizona.

Mowery is not sure if the voter-approved use of marijuana in Colorado and Washington state will hold up in court. Federal law prohibits the use of marijuana and federal laws override those created by state and local governments.