Ohio medical marijuana initiative rejected a second time

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September 21, 2011

By Bailey Ludlam


COLUMBUS, Ohio: Efforts to legalize the use of medical marijuana in the Buckeye state faced yet another hurdle this week. Less than a month after a second attempt was initiated to circulate initiative petitions for the Ohio 2012 ballot, Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine announced that the attempt failed.

The proposed initiative would have established a regulatory system modeled after the Ohio State Liquor Control system; an Ohio Commission of Cannabis Control; and required a medical prescription to buy marijuana.

Despite collecting sufficient signatures (at least 1,000) to initiate the circulation effort, DeWine explained that supporters failed to properly summarize the ballot language.[1]

  • A total of 2,365 signatures were submitted on September 7, 2011, 1,344 signatures were valid[2]
  • Ballot summary errors included: provisions left out of the summary, a misstated section, an included item not stated in the full amendment[2]

In the state of Ohio, the petition drive effort is required to collect 385,247 signatures in order to qualify the referendum for the ballot. However, an initial 1,000 signatures and approval by the Ohio Attorney General are required prior to initiating petition circulation efforts.

This marked the second attempt the certify an initiative related to medical marijuana. The first attempt was rejected in August 2011. DeWine stated that the measure's supporters did not collect the required amount of initial signatures to be approved for circulation. Of the 1,000 signatures needed for approval only 534 signatures were valid.[3]

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