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Town of York Recreational Marijuana Legalization Measure (November 2014)

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A Town of York Recreational Marijuana Legalization Measure ballot question may be on the November 4, 2014 election ballot for voters in the town of York in York County, Maine.

If approved, this measure would make it legal according to town law for an adult to possess and use up to 2.5 ounces of recreation marijuana. The measure is being sponsored and put on the ballot by the group Marijuana Policy Project. David Boyer, Maine’s political director for the national Marijuana Policy Project, announced on January 21, 2014, that the organization would attempt to put similar ballot measures on the ballots of three municipalities in Maine: Lewiston, South Portland and York.[1][2]

When asked why the Marijuana Policy Project chose the three communities announced, Boyer said that it was because South Portland neighbors Portland, win which a similar measure was approved in 2013, that Lewiston is viewed as a battleground for the governor's race and that York is close to potential initiatives in the future in New Hampshire and Massachusetts. Officials in York stated that they were surprised at the announced initiative effort and that Lewiston was chosen as a location for Marijuana Public Policy.[1]

Portland

David Boyer said that the Marijuana Policy Project plans to use questions similar to the successful 2013 Portland measure on its three announced local projects in Maine for 2014, which are Lewiston, South Portland and York.

The Portland question, Measure 1, had the following summary:

This ordinance legalizes the recreational use of marijuana by adults 21 years of age or older. It allows adults 21 years of age or older to legally possess up to 2.5 ounces of marijuana and paraphernalia. It also allows adults 21 years of age or older to engage in activities for the purpose of ascertaining the possession of marijuana and paraphernalia. It prohibits recreational use activities in public spaces, school grounds, and on transportation infrastructure. It prohibits adults under 21 and minors from engaging in recreational use activities. Landlords and property owners may restrict the smoking of marijuana on their property by posting "No Smoking" signs near the entrances. It requires the Mayor to report annually on the implementation enforcement of the ordinance; allows city officers and employees to cooperate with federal drug enforcement authorities as required by law; and makes the City's disciplinary procedures for officers and employees the exclusive remedy for a violation of the ordinance. Finally it resolves to support taxation and regulation of marijuana by the State of Maine and Federal government.[3][4]

Path to the ballot

See also: Laws governing local ballot measures in Maine

In July 2014, the group Citizens for a Safer Maine turned in a petition with 100 signatures, hoping this would motivate the town selectmen to put this measure on the ballot. The board voted three against to two to keep the measure off the ballot, citing the drug's illegal status federally and statewide. Again on August 27, 2014, the group turned in over 900 signatures trying to force the city officials to reconsider. The group required 641 to qualify the measure for town board of selectmen reconsideration. If the officials once again vote against putting the measure to a vote, the petitioners could call on a largely unused law that allows a notary public to call for an election or "town meeting" if the selectmen "unreasonably" refuse to do so.[5]

Similar measures

Recreational

Colorado:

Defeatedd Town of Palmer Lake Marijuana Legalization Referendum (April 2014)

Maine:

Michigan:

New Mexico:
Proposed ballot measures that were not on a ballot City of Albuquerque Marijuana Decriminalization Measure (November 2014)
Proposed ballot measures that were not on a ballot City of Santa Fe Marijuana Decriminalization Initiative (November 2014)

Wisconsin:

Approveda Dane County State Legalization of Marijuana Referendum (April 2014)

Medical

California:

Approveda Lake County Marijuana Cultivation Ordinance 2997 Referendum, Measure N (June 2014)
Proposed ballot measures that were not on a ballot City of Imperial Beach "Compassionate Access Ordinance" Medical Marijuana Dispensaries Act (June 2014)
Proposed ballot measures that were not on a ballot City of Napa Medical Marijuana Dispensary Referendum (November 2014)


See also

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