This week, the Secretary of State’s office confirmed that the measure, Arkansans for Compassionate Care, had submitted enough signatures from voters in the state to qualify the measure for the November ballot.
The measure would allow for medical cannabis to be produced, tested, and distributed to patients diagnosed by a physician. Qualifications for accessing a medical marijuana card is specified as a patient having one of over 50 qualifying conditions that can be bought at one of the 38 licensed nonprofit care centers. In order for patients to grow their own marijuana, they must receive a ‘hardship certificate’ that states they do not live a reasonable distance from one of the care centers.
Voting for legalization is not new to the Arkansas people. A measure looking to provide the same benefits was brought to the ballot in 2012, but lost – only winning 48% of the vote. However, advocates of the bill say this time is different, listing the polls registering 84% support in the area.
Arkansas adds it’s name to the now list of eight (possibly nine) states voting on marijuana initiatives this fall. Florida and Missouri join Arkansas in voting for medical marijuana access. Massachusetts, Nevada, Maine, Arizona, and California are all voting on adult recreational use. Michigan’s measure remains in litigation after the state dubbed their signatures “stale.”