Advocates submitted some 18,700 signatures to the Secretary of State’s office on Monday; they needed a total of 13,452 signatures to put the issue before voters.
“The measure legalizes the use, sale, possession, and distribution of marijuana for anyone 21 years or older. For anyone under the age of 21, the law creates a new specific subset of non-felony penalties. Additionally, the law legalizes “paraphernalia” for marijuana exclusively. Finally, records are expunged for anyone that followed the new law even if it occurred in the past, except for cases of someone being under the age of 21.” — Excerpt from the Legalize ND website
The signatures were collected by 100 volunteers over the course of six months. The signatures must now be validated, which the Secretary of State’s office says could take up to 35 days, after which the actual ballot initiative will be drafted.
“Not a single penny was spent on petitioning and gathering, because we wanted this to be the will of the people, not the will of some big company out in Lord knows where. This is, primarily, a grassroots effort.” — Dave Owen, chairperson of the ND Legalization Initiative, to the Bismarck Tribune
Nine other states plus Washington D.C. have already passed some form of adult-use cannabis legalization.