Marijuana decriminalization questions are coming to ballots in Bernalillo & Santa Fe Counties!
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It may be an off-year election, but it's a big one for drug policy reform. In seven weeks, voters across the country will have a chance to accelerate the unprecedented momentum to legalize marijuana and end the wider drug war. In fact, there are more drug policy reform questions on the ballot this November than ever in American history. Voter initiatives -- primarily reforming or repealing marijuana laws -- appear on the ballots in seven states, at least 17 municipalities and one U.S. territory. To help you keep score at home, here's an overview, starting with the highest-profile measures.
Supreme Court Agrees to Settle Ballot Dispute; No Ballots Will Be Mailed Without Marijuana, Mental Health Questions
New Mexico's State Supreme Court wasted little time Monday ordering Secretary of State Dianna Duran and county clerks to halt the publishing and mailing of ballots without county questions on marijuana and mental health.
The move comes after Bernalillo County's Commission voted to challenge the Secretary of State's decision to remove questions asking voters if they support marijuana decriminalization from ballots in Bernalillo and Santa Fe Counties.
Marijuana Initiative Officially Certified By Santa Fe City Clerk
First Time in New Mexico History People will Vote on Marijuana Reform
Santa Fe- Today the city of Santa Fe's City Clerk announced that the Reducing Marijuana Penalties Campaign submitted enough valid signatures to qualify for the city's citizen initiative process setting the stage to give voters in Santa Fe a vote on reducing marijuana penalties.
Santa Fe -- The Santa Fe city clerk today qualified more than 3,500 signatures from voters looking to send a citizen marijuana decriminalization initiative to the city council for a fall election.
Under city law, the campaign has 90 days to collect 5,673 signatures from voters to send the measure to the council for a special election. Last week, the group turned in more than 7,100 names collected in just 19 days and they have continued to collect signatures since.
From the ABQ Journal:
...City Clerk Yolanda Vigil said that doesn’t mean the effort is dead. State statute allows petitioners up to 90 days to collect signatures, so her office will start accepting additional signatures on Monday.
Vigil said 3,569 of the more than 7,000 signatures turned in on July 15 were validated. A total of 5,763 were required, meaning supporters of the decriminalization effort need another 2,194 valid signatures from registered voters in Santa Fe for the measure to have a chance to make it on the ballot in November.
The reducing marijuana penalties campaign will continue to collect names until the clerk qualifies enough names to send the citizen-led initiative to the council. Find locations carrying the petition here.
The city council is set to take up the matter at next Wednesday’s meeting where the council can vote to begin the public notice process subject to ratification from the clerk.
Emily Kaltenbach of Drug Policy Action:
“The shear number of supporters who signed in the first two weeks shows how popular this measure is in Santa Fe,”
The first batch did not quite meet the goal and we are still well within the 90-day period to collect.”
We are thankful for the hard work the city clerk and city employees put into verifying so many names so quickly and we are glad she has agreed to continue to receive signatures from voters until the ballot measure is qualified.”
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