idaho cannabis

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Idaho Supreme Court Ruling Affects Cannabis Ballot

August 25, 2021

The Idaho Supreme Court ruled that stringent signature requirements for ballot initiatives undermined the will of the voters. This ruling paves the way for a cannabis decriminalization measure to be placed on the ballot in 2022. 

Yesterday was a reasonably eventful day for all cannabis enthusiasts from the state of Idaho. The Idaho Supreme Court deemed the SB 1110 bill as ‘unconstitutional’, and it will no longer be implemented. They added that the bill was too stringent, and there was no need for such measures in the state laws of Idaho.

Idaho Cannabis Ballot Initiatives

But what was the bill all about, and why are the cannabis activists of Idaho so thrilled with its cancellation? The SB 1110 bill was a ruling about the provisions regarding the signature collection, a vital part of getting any ballot measure to the public voting level.

The bill stated that in order for any ballot measure to qualify for voting, it needs to collect the signatures from ALL 35 elective districts in Idaho. Furthermore, the bill also made it compulsory for lawmakers to collect signatures from at least six percent of the population from EACH district.

As one can see, these rulings are extremely strict, and therefore, the Supreme Court acted against this legislation and terminated it. The bill was made public on the 1st of July, and as experts suggested, it did not even last a year. Cannabis legalization analysts and experts suggest that the real motive behind the formation of this bill was to stop people from trying to make cannabis legal in the state and off the ballot.

However, it backfired, and now, people are more eager to legalize cannabis in Idaho. So now, the Personal Adult Marijuana Decriminalization (PAMD) Act can proceed with full thrust as nothing is stopping it.

SB1110 and PAMD

After the termination of the SB 1110 bill, all measures need to collect signatures from only 18 voting districts out of the 34 in total. A spokesperson for the organization ‘Legalize the Idaho Way’, Russ Belville, pitched in and said that as the number has been almost halved, marijuana activists are confident that the measure will collect the required signatures easily, within the prescribed time frame.

Besides, if you have been following the local news, the PAMDA is not the only ballot measure currently running in Idaho. An independent medical marijuana legalization bill is also in process. However, that bill was unaffected by the SB 1110 bill as it was under the hood of other rulings. Nonetheless, both the ballot initiatives are set to be put in front of voters in the 2022 ballot.

Contributed by Ali H.