IDAHO FALLS, Idaho (AP) – An Idaho campaign for medical marijuana legalization has moved forward after receiving permission to collect signatures from residents.
Deputy Secretary of State Chad Houck said Wednesday that organizers and supporters can begin gathering signatures from registered voters to put the Idaho Medical Marijuana Act on the November 2022 general election ballot, The Post Register reported.
The campaign needs to collect signatures from 6% of about 880,000 Idaho residents who voted last November, along with 6% of voters in half of Idaho’s 44 counties.
Campaign leader Jackee Winters said success will require obtaining at least 68,000 signatures. The signatures must be submitted by April 30, 2022.
The proposed law would allow people 21 and older with “debilitating” medical conditions, including cancer, chronic pain or terminal illness, to possess up to 4 ounces (113 grams) of marijuana with a prescription from a licensed Idaho doctor. Designated caregivers of qualifying patients would be granted similar rights.
The measure sets up a potential legal standoff between medical marijuana advocates and the state’s Republican-led Legislature, where a state constitutional amendment has been proposed to ban attempts to legalize psychoactive drugs.
States neighboring Idaho already allow possession or cultivation of marijuana for medicinal purposes.
“There’s so many people in Idaho that suffer. And they’re tired of it,” Winters said. “It’s a great state. We’re wonderful people and we just need to be taking care of the people who matter.”