MJ Ballot Question Awaits Signature Confirmation

September 1, 2008

Fayetteville, AR — A ballot petition to have marijuana arrests and convictions as a “low priority” by law enforcement and prosecutors may make its way to the voters this November.

The group Sensible Fayetteville collected 900 more names to add to a petition which already had the signatures of 3,385 registered Fayetteville voters, said Ryan Denham, an organizer for Sensible Fayetteville. It takes 3,686 voters to move the initiative to the ballot. When supporters of the measure turned in their first set of signatures Aug. 20, they were 310 names away from the mark.

“We have collected close to 900 gross signatures and are confident we at least have 301 valid,” said Denham, who turned in the final set of signatures to city hall Friday.

Officials in the Fayetteville City Clerk’s office will begin verifying the signatures next week. The measure will appear on November ballots if the 3,686 valid signature mark is met.

The drive by Sensible Fayetteville to put the marijuana issue to voters began in November 2007. If the “Lowest Law Enforcement and Prosecutorial Priority Policy Ordinance” passes, Fayetteville police and prosecutors will be required to treat adult marijuana possession offenses as a low priority.

Further, the measure requires the city clerk to send an annual letter to state and federal legislators, governor, and president stating: “The citizens of Fayetteville have passed an initiative to de-prioritize adult marijuana offenses, where the marijuana is intended for personal use, and request that the federal and Arkansas state governments take immediate steps to enact similar laws.”

Getting the extra signatures needed was not difficult, said Denham.

“The majority signed because they agreed with the initiative,” remarked Denham, adding getting “over the hump” or being part of the democratic process were not the top concerns among signers. “We had visitors from neighboring counties come to take literature and support our effort.”

Eureka Springs is the only other Arkansas city to support such a ballot measure. Similar laws have been passed by communities in Missouri, Montana, Washington, California and Colorado.

Source: Morning News, The (Springdale, AR)

Website: http://www.nwaonline.net/

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One Response to “MJ Ballot Question Awaits Signature Confirmation”

  1. SurnReet Says:

    favorited this one, bro


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