The Arkansas Secretary of State has approved the signatures gathered by Responsible Growth Arkansas for an adult-use cannabis initiative activists hope to have on the ballot this fall, the Associated Press reports. A spokesperson for the Secretary of State said on Friday the amendment had the 89,151 signatures needed to place it on the November ballot. Activists had submitted more than 192,000 signatures on July 8.
The initiative’s number and name, however, still require approval by the state Board of Elections, which will take up the issue on August 3, the AP says.
The plan would allow Arkansans to possess up to an ounce of cannabis while increasing the number of cannabis cultivators from the eight currently allowed under the state’s medical cannabis system to 20, and the number of dispensaries from 40 to 120.
Although adults cannot grow at home under the proposal, it would eliminate the state’s medical cannabis tax and levy the same amount, 6.5% sales tax and a 4% excise tax, to adult-use cannabis. The funds would be used for drug courts, health care research, and a “stipend” for law enforcement, the Arkansas Times reported last month.
“Assuming we get to the ballot, and we’re confident on that, I think, come November, we’ll pass this thing,” Steve Lancaster, co-counsel for Responsible Growth Arkansas, told the Times.