Voters in Oklahoma will head to the ballot on Tuesday to determine State Question 820, which will legalize recreational marijuana statewide. If passed, the initiative will legalize cannabis possession for adults 21 and older and establish a framework for governing the recreational marijuana industry in the state.
Cannabis activists wanted it state question 820 (SQ 820) was scheduled to appear before voters during the 2022 general election, but delays in validating the bill prevented the initiative from appearing on the ballot last November. In October, Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt announced voters would go to the polls on March 7 to decide the outcome of the bill.
As activists gear up for Tuesday’s election, Michelle Tilley, Yes campaign director for the 820 campaign, said the cannabis legalization measures would be a “reefer madness” style of intimidation pushed by the opposition to voters. It gives them a chance to choose to reject the tactic and support it instead.” Reforms that will make our country more prosperous, fairer and safer. ”
“We are working on our network to get all the last ‘yes’ votes in the state over the phone, on our doorstep or in the media,” Tilly wrote in an email. . high times“I am confident that if Oklahomans vote, the majority in favor of common sense legalization will win.”
SQ 820 Ballot Adjourned by Oklahoma Supreme Court
In July, the Wise Marijuana Law Oklahoma Group submitted a signed petition from more than 164,000 voters in favor of the legalization initiative. But election officials said the secretary of state, who used a new system to verify signatures, proved more signatures than in previous elections. It took much longer to do so, and there was not enough time to include the question in the November poll.
SQ 820’s campaign challenged the initiative’s decision to delay the vote, arguing that the group had met all guidance from the government and adhered to deadlines to submit proposals to state officials. Last month, however, the state Supreme Court upheld the election officials’ decision, ruling that the measure would not be included in ballots in next month’s midterm elections.
“There is no way to force the inclusion of SQ820 in the November 2022 general election ballot.” Justice Douglas Combs wrote: in majority opinion. “SQ820 will be voted on by Oklahomans in either the next general election on November 8, 2022, or a special election set by the governor or legislature.”
Special election announced in October
In October, Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt announced he would call for a special election for SQ 820 to be held on March 7, finally giving voters in the state a chance to decide on measures to legalize recreational marijuana. Ready to Give. Since then, activists have been busy preparing a public appeal vote to gain support for the bill. On Feb. 27, retired Army officer Jay Williams called on voters to approve the ballot initiative, saying SQ 820 would help veterans address the lasting negative effects of their service.
“I am proud to have served this country in defense of our freedom.” Williams said in campaign advertising. “But for many veterans, that pride comes at a price: PTSD. Veterans in Oklahoma do not have access to medical marijuana through the VA, which can lead to harsh penalties and even imprisonment.” Voting for 820 means improving access to medical marijuana for Oklahoma veterans, reducing penalties for minor marijuana offenses, and using drugs to improve lives. It means more treatment.”
If voters approve SQ 820 on Tuesday, the ballot measure would legalize cannabis for adults 21 and older. This initiative will task the state’s existing Oklahoma Medical Marijuana Authority with drafting and implementing rules to regulate the new recreational cannabis industry. The measure also includes a provision that allows persons previously convicted of some marijuana offenses to apply to the courts to have their convictions cleared.
SQ 820 sets a 15% tax on the sale of recreational marijuana. This is more than double the 7% tax rate charged on the sale of medical cannabis. Taxes generated by the sale of recreational cannabis are passed between the state’s General Revenue Fund, local governments that allow licensed adult-use cannabis businesses to operate in their jurisdictions, state court systems, school districts, and drug treatment programs. is divided by