Spain hamlet votes on pot-growing to pay off debt

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A Spanish hamlet of mostly retirees is voting on whether it should allow marijuana-growing as a source of revenue to pay off its debt.

The referendum is being held Tuesday in Rasquera, population 960, in the northeastern Catalonia region.

The seven-member town council first approved the idea in March but such controversy ensued that the mayor agreed to put it to a referendum.

At least 75 percent of the votes must be in favor for the plan to go ahead. If that happens, a plot of land will be leased to an association of marijuana buffs in Barcelona who would grow the plants and pay Rasquera $1.7 million.

The Spanish government has warned, however, that this kind of large-scale marijuana cultivation would be illegal.