KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Voters in Missouri will decide this November whether to legalize recreational marijuana.
Missouri Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft’s office announced Tuesday a petition seeking to expand marijuana use and expunge cannabis-related criminal records was deemed sufficient.
“I encourage Missourians to study and educate themselves on any ballot initiative,” Ashcroft said in Tuesday’s release.
The proposed constitutional amendment will be listed on the ballot as Amendment 3 and if passed would allow for the possession, consumption, purchase and cultivation of marijuana for Missourians ages 21 or older.
Nonviolent marijuana offenses in the state would be expunged from criminal records, unless the offenses involved distributing marijuana to a minor or driving under the influence.
Ashcroft says the citizien initiative petition from the Legal Missouri 2022 campaign is “particularly lengthy.” The petition received roughly 400,000 supporters and the Missouri Secretary of State's office determined it contained 214,535 valid voter signatures, surpassing the 184,720 needed to land it on the ballot.
If passed, Missouri would be the 20th state in the country to regulate and legalize marijuana.
“Our statewide coalition of activists, business owners, medical marijuana patients and criminal justice reform advocates has worked tirelessly to reach this point, and deserves all the credit,” LegalMo22 campaign manager John Payne said. "Our campaign volunteers collected 100,000 signatures, on top of paid signature collection. That outpouring of grassroots support among Missourians who want to legalize, tax and regulate cannabis made all the difference."
144 new licensed cannabis facilities would be added to the 393 certified cannabis businesses currently in operation, selected at random.
More information about the petition is available on the Secretary of State’s website.
Editors note: KSHB 41 News has removed the video portion of this story due to a misstatement of fact regarding who would be eligible to have a marijuana conviction vacated and records expunged. A source in the broadcast version stated only individuals on probation and parole would be eligible under the petition if passed into law by voters to request their sentences be vacated and records expunged. The petition language also makes that option available to persons in prison, jail or in halfway houses.