Post date: 11/8/2022

It’s election day, and across the US, cannabis is on the ballot. At present, there are 37 US states and 4 US territories that have legalized and/or decriminalized medical, hybrid, and/or adult-use cannabis. While it may take a few days for all the results to be tallied and announced, there are sure to be some big changes in store for the future of the US cannabis industry.

Here’s an overview of what 2022 cannabis initiatives are on the ballot in which states, and how those changes might affect your state’s cannabis laws.

Arkansas

Arkansas will be voting on Issue 4, an initiative to legalize cannabis in the state. Expected to pass, the margin may be slim due to a last-minute push by conservative groups to defeat the initiative. If approved, AR Issue 4 would:

  • Open a 21+ cannabis market in AR
  • Legal possession of up to 1 oz of cannabis
  • Repeal of residency requirements to obtain a medical cannabis card
  • Cannabis regulation under the state Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) Division of the Department of Finance and Administration
  • No home cultivation
  • Dispensaries would be able to cultivate and store up to 100 seedings
  • Up to 10% supplemental taxes
  • Tax revenue divided to fund law enforcement, the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences and the state drug court program

Maryland

Maryland will be voting on Ballot Question 4, Marijuana Legalization Amendment. If approved, MD Ballot Question 4 would:

  • Trigger complementary HB837 bill to set basic regulations for a MD adult-use cannabis program
  • Under HB837, legal purchase and possession of cannabis, up to 1.5 oz
  • Removal of criminal penalties for possession of up to 2.5 oz
  • 21+ adults would be allowed up to 2 plants for personal cultivation
  • 21+ adults may gift cannabis without remuneration
  • Automatic expungement of prior cannabis convictions
  • Resentencing for convicts currently serving time for cannabis convictions
  • Creation of a community reinvestment fund
  • State tax deductions for certain cannabis-related expenses

Missouri

Missouri will be voting on Amendment 3, a highly-contested measure to legalize cannabis in the state. If approved, MO Amendment 3 would:

  • Legalize purchase/possession of up to 3 oz of cannabis
  • With a valid registration card, cultivate up to 6 flowering cannabis plants, 6 immature plants, and 6 plant clones
  • Levy a 6% tax on recreational cannabis, the revenue for which would be directed to automatic expungements of non-violent cannabis convictions
  • Remainder of cannabis tax funds directed toward veterans’ healthcare, substance abuse treatment and the state’s public defenders
  • Cannabis regulation under MO Department of Health and Senior Services
  • Prioritize social equity licenses

North Dakota

North Dakota will be voting on Statutory Measure 2 Marijuana Legalization Initiative Ballot Question, an initiative to legalize cannabis in the state. This initiative marks the second time that cannabis legalization is up for a vote in ND, after a defeat in 2018. If approved, ND Statutory Measure 2 would:

  • Allow 21+ adults to purchase/possess up to 1 oz of cannabis and four grams of cannabis concentrate
  • Allow 21+ adults to possess flowers produced from up to 3 plants grown for personal use, as long as that cannabis is held in the same place where it was cultivated
  • Regulate cannabis under the Department of Health and Human Services or agency created specifically to regulate the cannabis program
  • Create specific child custody protections for parents who use cannabis in compliance with state law
  • ND 5% sales tax applied to cannabis products, but no additional cannabis-specific tax would be imposed
  • Prohibition of public consumption

South Dakota

South Dakota will be voting on Measure 27 Marijuana Legalization Initiative Ballot Question, an initiative that was passed in 2020, before being ultimately overturned by SD courts.Support for the initiative is lagging, but proponents remain optimistic.. If approved, SD Measure 27 would:

  • Legalize 21+ adult purchase and possession of up to 1 oz of cannabis and/or cultivation of up to 3 plants for personal use
  • Enforce civil penalties for public consumption and/or cultivating of more plants than legally allowed
  • Allow employers to continue enforcement of workplace drug policy as applied to cannabis

 

Colorado

Colorado might make history again, voting on Prop 122 Decriminalization and Regulated Access Program for Certain Psychedelic Plants and Fungi Initiative Ballot Question. This initiative aims to legalize use of psychedelics in the state, following Oregon’s lead in authorizing licensed facilities to administer supervised psilocybin services. If approved, CO Prop 122 would:

  • Legalize 21+ adult use, possession, cultivation and sharing of psilocybin, ibogaine, mescaline (not derived from peyote), DMT and psilocybin, without an explicit possession limit
  • CO Department of Regulatory Agencies would be responsible for development of a 21+ adult therapeutic psychedelics program and licensed healing centers to supervise treatment under trained facilitators
  • Introduction of a 2-tiered regulatory system, first phasing in psilocybin and psilocin, then phase in DMT, ibogaine and mescaline in a second wave
    Criminal convictions for these type of offenses would have the right to petition the courts for record sealing or expungement

Ohio

Ohio will be voting on cannabis decriminalization initiatives in 6 cities: Corning, Hemlock, Kent, Laurelville, Rushville and Shawnee. If approved, these OH local initiatives would:

Texas

Texas will be voting on cannabis decriminalization measures in 6 cities: Denton, Elgin, Harker Heights, Killeen, and San Marcos. If approved, these TX local measures would:

  • Decriminalize cannabis possession
  • Put cannabis legalization on the 2023 year’s TX state ballot
  • Jump-start statewide cannabis reform that is supported by the popular vote, but has stalled in conservative legislation
  • Trigger cannabis criminal justice reform in the 2023 TX session

Wisconsin

Wisconsin will be voting in three counties and five municipalities across the state to gauge voter support for statewide cannabis decriminalization, taxation, regulation, and criminal reform.
If approved, these measures will not change any current laws, but they will:

  • Provide lawmakers with a clear view of voter support among their constituents with regard to cannabis legalization, taxation, and criminal reform
  • Prioritize putting cannabis policy reform measures on the statewide ballot
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