The first hurdle in getting Ohioans for Medical Marijuana's ballot in front of voters this November has been cleared. Today, Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine announced he has certified the group's ballot language and the 1,000 valid signatures needed to ship the ballot initiative to the Ohio Secretary of State for the next step. (DeWine had previously rejected
earlier ballot language from the group.)
“We’re pleased with the attorney general’s determination and appreciate his guidance during this process,” said Mason Tvert, communications director for the Marijuana Policy Project, which is supporting the initiative, in a press release. “Ohio is one step closer to adopting a sensible medical marijuana law that ensures seriously ill people have safe and legal access to their medicine. We’re looking forward to hearing back from the secretary of state and getting our petition drive started as soon as possible.”
A handy breakdown of the nuts and bolts of OMM's initiative (full version here
), via Cleveland.com:
Adults could grow, buy, and use marijuana if a physician recommends marijuana for a qualifying medical condition such as cancer, seizure disorders, or post-traumatic stress disorder. Minors could use marijuana with written permission of a parent or guardian.
Approved patients could buy and possess up to 2.5 ounces of marijuana and grow up to six plants or designate another adult to grow for them.
The first 15 commercial growing licenses would be for large-scale growers who pay a $500,000 application fee, but then there would be an unlimited number of licenses available for small- and medium-scale growers.
What happens next?
The state's Ballot Board will look at the initiative and in the next 10 days determine whether it complies with Ohio laws regarding initiatives. Then, 305,591 valid signatures would be needed to be collected.