November 19, 2020

BRENDAN JOHNSON | Amendment A - Marijuana Reform

Johnson Discusses Amendment A Marijuana Reform on Credit Hour

VERMILLION, S.D. – Brendan Johnson, B.S. ’98, lead counsel for Amendment A discussed the implications of marijuana reform on the podcast Credit Hour.

“What is not up for compromise is the fact that [marijuana] is decriminalized,” Johnson said. “The people have spoken very clearly on that.”

Johnson served as lead counsel for Amendment A. He is a former U.S. Attorney for the District of South Dakota and practices at Robins Kaplan in Sioux Falls.

Johnson said the law will go into effect in July of 2021. Johnson said taxes on marijuana will be capped at 15 percent split between the general budget and education. He also said it may have benefits for tribal communities and from a social justice standpoint.

“Some of the biggest benefits are from a social justice perspective. We lock up too many people in our country. We lock up too many people in South Dakota,” Johnson said citing statistics that marijuana arrests account for over 10 percent of arrests in South Dakota.

Credit Hour is the University of South Dakota’s podcast highlighting the achievement, research and scholarship of its staff, students, alumni and faculty. Follow Credit Hour on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, and

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