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Initiated measure draft to legalize marijuana submitted

RAPID CITY, S.D.  – A draft initiated measure to legalize recreational marijuana in South Dakota has been submitted to the Attorney General’s office.

The draft measure, submitted by Genesis Farms in Rapid City, would also create dual-use licenses for medical marijuana dispensaries.

The proposed initiated measure would also allow people who are at least 21 years old to possess, grow, sell, ingest, and distribute marijuana or marijuana paraphernalia.

According to a release from the South Dakota Attorney General’s Office, the measure will not affect laws dealing with hemp.

State Attorney General Marty Jackley on Friday released a draft of his official explanation of Reistroffer’s proposal. The public can offer suggestions regarding the attorney general’s draft explanation through the close of business on Monday, November 27.

This, the AG office stated, is meant to be an “objective, clear, and simple summary” intended to “educate the voters of the purpose and effect of the proposed” measure, as well as identify the “legal consequences” of the measure.

The initiated measure would require 17,509 valid petition signatures to qualify for the 2024 general election ballot.

There currently are several 2024 ballot questions related to cannabis that are being circulated, including one to repeal medical marijuana.

Emmett Reistroffer of Genesis Farms submitted the draft initiated measure.

South Dakota voters in 2020 approved an initiated measure legalizing medical marijuana use. They also approved a constitutional amendment in 2020 that would have legalized recreational marijuana. The result was 225,260 in favor of the constitutional amendment and 190,477 against. But the South Dakota Supreme Court ruled in 2021 that the proposed amendment improperly contained more than one subject and declared it invalid.

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photo courtesy Great Plains Fire

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