D.C. marijuana legalization measure set for November ballot

D.C. voters to decide in November whether to legalize marijuana

The District of Columbia Board of Elections ruled Wednesday that Initiative 71, a measure that would legalize marijuana in Washington, has enough valid signatures to appear on November’s ballot.

Initiative 71 would allow adults over the age of 21 to possess up to 2 ounces of marijuana and allow for the cultivation of up to six marijuana plants in a person's home. The measure would also make it legal to use or sell drug paraphernalia.

The city's law prevents the ballot initiative from addressing the sale of marijuana, but the D.C. City Council is considering a bill regarding its taxation and regulation. A marijuana decriminalization law passed by the council in the spring took effect in July.

“It is clear from the number of signatures the campaign was able to submit that the citizens of the District would like to have a say in reforming the marijuana laws of the District,” Dr. Malik Burnett, vice chairman of the DC Cannabis Campaign, said in a statement.

Oregon and Alaska will also be voting on legalization ballot measures in November that will determine whether they will join Colorado and Washington state in permitting recreational marijuana use.

Twenty-four states and Washington, D.C., have passed laws permitting the use of medicinal marijuana.

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