Arkansas attorney general rejects marijuana ballot initiative language

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Arkansas cannabis advocates are going back to the drawing board after the state’s attorney general rejected the most recent proposed language for a ballot initiative that would increase access to medical marijuana and trigger adult-use legalization if federal reform occurs.

According to the Arkansas Advocate, Attorney General Tim Griffin decided that the ballot’s title, Arkansas Medical Cannabis Amendment of 2024, wasn’t formatted properly and was too ambiguous.

“My decision to certify or reject a popular name and ballot title is unrelated to my view of the proposed measure’s merits,” Griffin wrote in his decision.

“I am not authorized to consider the measure’s merits when considering certification.”

The measure, which the Advocate reported is backed by the medical marijuana industry, would have:

  • Expanded who can approve medical cannabis cards and allow providers to assess patients through telemedicine.
  • Allowed MMJ authorization for any condition, not just the state’s existing 18 qualifying conditions.
  • Permitted adult use if the federal government legalizes it.
  • Legalized home cultivation of marijuana.

Arkansans for Patient Access, the advocacy group that wrote the proposed language, plans to resubmit new language for consideration.

Time is of the essence, however: Ballot language must be approved before petitioners can gather the 90,704 required signatures in support of the initiative.

The signature submission deadline is July 5.

“We are confident ballot language will be presented that ultimately gains approval,” said the group’s attorney, Erika Gee.