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Michigan Marijuana Ballot Proposals Get Thumbs Up, Thumbs Down

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michigan medical marijuana town hallThe issue of decriminalizing the possession and use of small amounts of marijuana will be put to the voters in three Michigan communities this fall. Or, maybe not.

The ballot language proposes to empower all adults 21 and over with the right to legally use and possess marijuana on private property within city limits. The same or similar language was adopted into law by voters in Detroit, Grand Rapids and Flint in 2012. In each city- Lansing, Ferndale and Jackson- petitioners have gathered enough signatures to place the issue before the voters in November of 2013.

The petition process involves verification of signatures, followed by an opportunity to adopt the measure by city council without a vote of the people. Should any of the three city councils adopt the language, no November vote will be taken in that city.

In Ferndale the signatures were verified and the city council met on Monday, August 12. Council was faced with the option of embracing this issue or sending it to the voters; in a 4-1 decision they declined to adopt the language on their own. Councilpersons expressed concern over the use of the term ‘private property’ in the ballot language. During the Detroit campaign to decriminalize marijuana, that same ballot language was challenged by the Detroit Elections Commission all the way to the Michigan Supreme Court. The Court ordered Detroit to place the language, unadjusted, on the ballot.

In Jackson, petition drive organizer Steve Sharpe announced that the city has verified enough signatures to place the issue before the voters. Their city council will have the option of adopting the ballot proposal but, like Ferndale, resistance is expected.

Jackson has given their medical marijuana patients a rough ride. The city council has repeatedly tried to adopt ordinances restricting patient access. After prosecutors closed all the distribution centers in the county, the council has tried to restrict caregiving activities by legal and licensed marijuana gardeners by limiting the amount of space within their home devoted to the garden to only 20%. A protest by patients, caregivers and supporters was slated for 4 pm, August 13, at the Jackson City Hall in advance of a second reading of the proposed ordinance by the council this evening at 6:30.

Sharpe said, “There is a possibility that they will consider the ballot proposal, but it has been confirmed that they will be voting on the ordinance at the council meeting tonight.” Sharpe cautiously opined that the consensus among marijuana activists in the area is that the ordinance will likely be voted down.

Source: The Compassion Chronicles

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About Author

"Rick Thompson was the Editor in Chief for the entire 2-year run of the Michigan Medical Marijuana Magazine, was the spokesman for the Michigan Association of Compassion Centers and is the current Editor and Lead Blogger for The Compassion Chronicles. Rick has addressed committees in both the House and Senate, has authored over 200 articles on marijuana and is a professional photographer." Rick Thompson Is An Author At The Compassion Chronicles and focuses on all things Michigan.

1 Comment

  1. Dennis Pielack on

    It’s the information age and true testimony and scientific research have together exposed the Schedule 1 designation and prohibition of marijuana by law to be in gross error of claim and great harm to the health potential of American People.
    The informed American population have searched beyond the brainwash provided by those who have captalized on the error of the law, and dared to grow and know cannabis in the light of GOD’S Creation, as food, as medicine.
    Their testimony ignited the use of marijuana and their votes corrected the error of the Federal Law to some small degree in their own States.
    This President, who personally admitted to his own use of marijuana and knows the effects and minimal risk of harm, who personally escaped the hand of the law he uses to agressively prosecute others for using marijuana, has not been honorable or honest as leader of a “free” people, expected to be “free” to intellegently care for one’s individual health, “free” to worship in spirit and truth, “free” to recreate in privacy and peace. None of these “freedoms” are a threat or harm to anyone, but the law makes them a crime. It’s time to vote for honesty, common sense, and honor.

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