South Dakota’s Secretary of State officially certified an adult-use legalization initiative for the 2020 ballot today. Last month, a separate medical marijuana ballot initiative was also certified. South Dakota will now be the first state in American history to vote on medical marijuana and adult-use legalization initiatives on the same ballot.
The adult-use legalization initiative would legalize marijuana for adults aged 21 and over, establish a system for regulated sales of marijuana, and require the state legislature to enact a hemp cultivation law, MPP reported.
The initiative, if passed, “will focus law enforcement resources on fighting serious crime, generate new tax revenue for the state, and create jobs,” MPP stated.
South Dakotans for Better Marijuana Laws, the campaign leading the constitutional adult-use legalization campaign, submitted over 50,000 signatures for its initiative in November.
South Dakota’s current marijuana laws are some of the harshest in the country. Industrial hemp and all forms of CBD oil are illegal with the exception of the FDA-approved medication Epidiolex.
Governor Noem previously vetoed a bill to legalize the cultivation of hemp. This past September, she reiterated her opposition by pledging to veto the issue again in 2020.
Two of the leading national marijuana policy reform organizations, the Marijuana Policy Project and New Approach PAC, are supporting the South Dakota campaigns.
Visit the South Dakotans for Better Marijuana Laws website for more information about the ballot initiatives.