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Marijuana legalization group sues state

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Cites ban on electronic signatures, despite COVID-19

“Town Crier” newsletter – Briefs from the Region (1) – 4/16/20

According to KTVH, New Approach Montana, a group seeking to put marijuana legalization on the November ballot, is suing the state and Secretary of State Corey Stapleton over petition signature collection concerns. Currently, two proposed measures—Initiative 190 to create the framework for a recreational marijuana system, including a 20% tax on sales, and Constitutional Initiative 118, geared to amend the Montana Constitution allowing the state to make 21 the legal minimum age to buy or possess marijuana—need 25,468 and 50,936 signatures, respectively, to qualify for the upcoming ballot. The suit calls for the allowance of electronic signatures, due to the hazards of in-person signature collections posed by COVID-19, as well as a collection deadline extension from June 19 to Aug. 3. The suit claims other initiatives already have electronic signature privileges, and New Approach Montana thinks tax collections off future sales could prove essential to right an economy hobbled by the pandemic.

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