Zeitgeist

Missouri Secretary of State Robin Carnahan:

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, November 07, 2011
Contact: Laura Egerdal, (573) 526-0949

Two Initiative Petitions Approved for Circulation for 2012 Ballot

Jefferson City, MO – Secretary of State Robin Carnahan today announced that two initiative petitions relating to cannabis have met state standards for circulation.

The ballot title for the first petition relating to cannabis reads:

Shall the Missouri Constitution be amended to:

  • legalize cannabis (commonly known as marijuana) for individuals 21 years or older;
  • make medical cannabis available to individuals with a physician’s recommendation including those under 21 with parental or legal guardian consent and physician supervision;
  • create licensing processes for operation of cannabis establishments;
  • release individuals incarcerated or on probation or parole for non-violent, cannabis-only offenses which would no longer be illegal and expunge all records related to such offenses; and
  • allow the legislature to enact a tax on the retail sale of dried cannabis up to $100 per pound?

Annual state government operating costs would increase by at least $1 million with the total increase being unknown. Those costs would be offset by an unknown increase in fee and tax revenues. The fiscal impact to local governmental entities is unknown with some increase in revenue possible.

The petition, which would amend Article IV of the Missouri Constitution, was submitted by Mr. Dan Viets, 15 North 10th Street, Columbia, MO 65201.

The ballot title for the second petition relating to cannabis reads:

Shall Missouri law be amended to:

  • legalize cannabis (commonly known as marijuana) for individuals 21 years or older;
  • make medical cannabis available to individuals with a physician’s recommendation including those under 21 with parental or legal guardian consent and physician supervision;
  • create licensing processes for operation of cannabis establishments;
  • release individuals incarcerated or on probation or parole for non-violent, cannabis-only offenses which would no longer be illegal and expunge all records related to such offenses; and
  • allow the legislature to enact a tax on the retail sale of dried cannabis up to $100 per pound?

Annual state government operating costs would increase by at least $1 million with the total increase being unknown. Those costs would be offset by an unknown increase in fee and tax revenues. The fiscal impact to local governmental entities is unknown with some increase in revenue possible.

The petition, which would amend Chapters 105, 195 and 263 of the Missouri Revised Statutes, was also submitted by Mr. Dan Viets, 15 North 10th Street, Columbia, MO 65201.

Before any constitutional changes can be brought before Missouri voters in the November 2012 election, signatures must be obtained from registered voters equal to eight (8) percent of the total votes cast in the 2008 governor’s election from six of the state’s nine congressional districts. For statutory changes, signatures must be obtained from registered voters equal to five (5) percent of the total votes cast in the 2008 governor’s election from six of the state’s nine congressional districts.

Signatures on behalf of all initiative petitions for the 2012 ballot are due to the Secretary of State’s office by no later than 5 p.m. on May 6, 2012.

Before circulating petitions, state law requires that groups must first have the form of their petition approved by the Secretary of State and Attorney General. The Secretary of State then prepares a summary statement of no more than 100 words and the State Auditor prepares a fiscal impact statement, both of which are subject to the approval of the Attorney General. When both statements are approved, they become the official ballot title.

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To find out more about Missouri’s Secretary of State’s office, visit www.sos.mo.gov

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