Exciting news! A newly formed political campaign, South Dakotans for Better Marijuana Laws, has launched an effort to pass two marijuana reform ballot initiatives in South Dakota next year.
Yes, you read that right: South Dakota.
The first ballot initiative, a proposed constitutional amendment, would legalize and regulate marijuana for adults 21 and older and direct the legislature to enact laws regulating the cultivation and sale of hemp. The second ballot initiative, a proposed statutory amendment, would establish a medical marijuana law for qualifying patients.
The 2020 campaign, supported by MPP, must collect 33,921 signatures from voters by November 3 of this year to qualify the constitutional initiative for the 2020 ballot. The statutory initiative will require 16,961 voter signatures to qualify.
Leading politicians in the state have consistently opposed marijuana policy reform, and Gov. Kristi Noem even opposes the legalization of industrial hemp. This campaign will give the voters of South Dakota the opportunity to decide these issues at the ballot box.
We will keep you informed of major developments. You also can follow the campaign and support them by signing up for email alerts on their website.
The South Dakota Legislature begins its legislative session today. Unfortunately, marijuana policy reform isn’t on the docket. In fact, just like in 2018, there are no marijuana policy reform bills filed in 2019.
That’s where you come in — ask your lawmakers today to support the decriminalization of marijuana with our easy-to-use email system.
No adults should face jail time for possessing small amounts of marijuana. Twenty-three other states have stopped jailing marijuana consumers and it’s time for South Dakota to do the same.
So please, reach out to your local representatives and tell them why you support decriminalizing marijuana in South Dakota. After you reach out, share this link with friends and family. Together, we can bring sensible marijuana policy to South Dakota.
New Approach South Dakota submitted nearly 15,000 signatures to the Secretary of State with hopes of adding a medical marijuana measure to the 2018 ballot.
South Dakota Secretary of State Shantel Krebs said the review of the submitted measure would likely be finished within four months. Her office conducts a random sampling of the signatures to determine validity, with at least 5% of the collected signatures being reviewed.
The medical marijuana measure that was submitted for signature validation would allow patients with certain conditions like cancer, HIV/AIDS, chronic debilitating pain, and PTSD to obtain a registration card to possess up to three ounces of marijuana.
To read the full text of New Approach South Dakota’s proposed medial marijuana ballot initiative, check our their website. We are hopeful that the initiative will qualify for the 2018 ballot and that South Dakotans will have the opportunity to adopt a compassionate policy for medical marijuana patients.
In the final weeks of signature collection, New Approach South Dakota is pushing forward to reach their goal. Two petitions are being circulated — one petition seeks to legalize marijuana for medical uses and the other to legalize certain amounts of marijuana for adult use and to regulate and tax marijuana establishments.
These ballot measures are of critical importance since the South Dakota Legislature has only taken a symbolic step toward patient access. A bill passed during the last session would hypothetically allow patients access to CBD oil, but the law includes a requirement that any recommended CBD oil be approved by the Food and Drug Administration, which would indefinitely curtail access to the oil in South Dakota.
Furthermore, South Dakota’s marijuana possession laws may be the nation’s harshest. Specifically, individuals who have consumed marijuana elsewhere are subject to penalty if they test positive for past use — even if they consumed marijuana in a state where it was legal!
November 6 is the date to submit signed petitions, so if you haven’t added your signature, there is still a bit of time left! Check out New Approach South Dakota’s Facebook page for most up-to-date information on signing locations and events!