Advocates in South Dakota are calling the state Supreme Court’s decision to invalidate a voter-approved recreational cannabis initiative on technical grounds a “terrible precedent” and are calling on the Legislature to put it right with voters by approving adult-use legalization in the 2022 session. “They rejected common sense,” said Matthew Schweich, deputy director of the Marijuana Policy Project and campaign director for South Dakotans for Better Marijuana Laws, the group that sponsored the 2020 initiative. According to the courts, Amendment A, which passed in 2020 with 54% of the vote, was unconstitutional because South Dakota law states that initiatives must be a single subject; Amendment A “embraced ‘at least five distinct general subjects,’” including the right to grow, possess and use marijuana; giving the state the power to promulgate rules regulating marijuana; imposing a tax on marijuana and directing how the revenue is appropriated; requiring the Legislature to pass laws ensuring access to medical marijuana; and requiring the Legislature to pass laws regarding hemp. Schweich said opponents of cannabis legalization “weaponized” the single-subject requirement and said justices “bent over backward to throw this law out.”

Marijuana Venture, 01/06/2022 15:00:00

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