DeWine rejects proposed Ohio pot amendment

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) – A proposal to legalize marijuana in Ohio has failed to clear an initial state hurdle as its backers seek to put the issue before voters this fall.

Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine on Monday rejected a petition for the proposed constitutional amendment, citing problems with its summary.

The group ResponsibleOhio, which submitted 1,000 valid signatures, is pushing to get the constitutional amendment on the November ballot. It would legalize the sale of marijuana for medicinal and recreational use. The proposed amendment calls for 10 grow sites across the state.

Backers plan to spend millions to get it passed.

DeWine said the amendment’s summary language omits that the proposal would permit the sharing of specified amounts of marijuana between adults age 21 and older. He also said the summary language does not accurately reflect the manner in which proposed taxes would be distributed.

Additionally, DeWine noted that at least one marijuana establishment proposed in the amendment may be within 1,000 feet of a “house of worship and/or a public playground,” which would conflict with claims made in the summary language. However, due to the other deficiencies with the summary petition, the Attorney General’s Office did not attempt to validate the claims regarding locations.

“After reviewing the submission, I conclude that I am unable to certify the summary as a fair and truthful statement of the proposed amendment,” DeWine stated in a letter to the petitioners.

(Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)



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