State marijuana ballot initiative moves forward


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A group wanting to make weed legal in Mississippi could begin as early as next week to collect signatures to have an initiative on the November 2016 ballot seeking to legalize marijuana in the state.

A group wanting to make weed legal in Mississippi could begin as early as next week to collect signatures to have an initiative on the November 2016 ballot seeking to legalize marijuana in the state.

Mississippi for Cannabis filed a petition in late September with the secretary of state’s satellite office in Hernando, said petition organizer Kelly Jacobs, a longtime Democratic Party official from Hernando. It was the initial step in the ballot process.

The final process before collecting signatures comes Tuesday when the Secretary of State runs a newspaper ad with language about the ballot initiative title and a summary . “State law requires the Secretary of State’s office to publish the ballot title and summary in a newspaper of general circulation throughout Mississippi,” Secretary of State spokeswoman Pamela Weaver said.

If the sponsor the ballot or another person is dissatisfied with the ballot title or summary drafted by the Attorney General’s office, they have five days from publication to file an appeal in Hinds County Circuit Court. If they approve of the title and summary, they can begin collecting the signatures required to get the initiative on the ballot.

Petition organizers would have to collect the approximately 110,000 signatures needed to get the measure on the November 2016 ballot. Voters would then have to approve it for it to become law.

Jacobs said the ballot initiative proposal would legalize cannabis for adults to own as much as they wish, to use as they wish, just like alcohol or cigarettes.However, it would have to be kept from minors.

“We want to legalize marijuana and decriminalize it,” Jacobs said. “It’s an adult discussion we should be having.”

VIA Clarion Ledger


  1. Thank-you for sharing information about Mississippi’s Ballot Initiative #48. The SOS might eventually release our petition, eating away at the time we need to collect signatures in order to get them all certified before the October 2nd deadline to hand them in if we are to have the initiative on the 2016 ballot.
    We need celebrities to please come here (pay their own way) and host voter registration rallies, so that some of the estimated 360,000 eligible but not registered young Mississippians will register to vote and will help Team Legalize grow. Many people are scared, including me… will the police arrest me bc I’m the sponsor of this initiative, even though I have never used cannabis? John Morgan of Morgan and Morgan in Florida voiced this same concern.

    If you live out of state, you can still help #LegalizeMS #bi48 with social media. We have a strategy, here tiz: Help Where you can, when you can.
    1. Build a big team of Mississippi petition volunteers who send their name, county and phone number to
    * Register Voters so that our TEAM LEGALIZE #48 voting block is bigger than theirs (Team No Way).
    2. BRAND OUR NUMBER #48 SO THAT EVERYONE KNOWS IT IS ABOUT LEGALIZING CANNABIS (there are 3 additional ballot initiative trying to collect signatures for the 2016 ballot #44, #45 & #46).
    3. Recruit #48 cannabis supportive candidates to run for State wide and County wide office(s) in 2015. They can file their paperwork beginning Jan 2 until the deadline of Feb 28th 2015 if they are running on a party ticket, then support their campaigns by volunteering.
    4. Use social media to promote our ballot initiative #48 to legalize and decriminalize cannabis.
    5. Help #bi48 get press by sending copies of our official press release to any interested press (it will be posted/shared on our web page & FB page & emailed to volunteers). Politely thank the press when they write cannabis articles with a TY note if you have their contact information (can you mention #bi48 if they did not?) and post TY’s on the website of their article/story.
    6. Support Ballot Initiative #42 BY VOTING for it next November (Better Schools Better Jobs). Ballot initiative #42 will be on the 11/2015 ballot to fully fund education along with another initiative that the MS Legislature is writing now to try to defeat it by confusing voters. We are going to support it and vote YES on #42 because then the State of Mississippi will need the monies they will gain by Legalizing Cannabis in 2016 to fully fund education.
    7. Ask signatores /supporters of our ballot initiative #48 petition for their contact information (the petition does not ask for their phone number nor email so we must do that separately) so that we can ask then for their help in registering voters, gathering petition signatures and getting out the TEAM LEGALIZE vote in 2016.
    8. Have one volunteer Liaison in each of the 82 Counties who will try to make sure that the petitions are as accurately submitted as possible, and to get completed/Certified forms to Kelly Jacobs.
    9. Get Celebrities to HOST VOTER REGISTRATION RALLIES and let us collect Ballot Initiative #48 signatures at the event (they pay for the event).
    10. SURROGATE SPEAKER: Visit other group meetings in our community! The NAACP, Democratic Party, Republican Party, Libertarian Party, Lions Club, Board of Supervisors, Churches have meetings that can be attended by the public, and sometimes allowed to speak. We have a SURROGATE SPEECH stored in our FB file section that you an read. Widen your circle of influence by attending meetings you do not normally attend, you may be given an opportunity to speak on behalf of our ballot initiative and to find supporters who will help collect signatures.
    11. Recruit College Students to help collect signatures by hosting local facebook pages that support our ballot initiative. Go visit your local college to find supporters and attend group meetings on campus to speak about our ballot initiative #48.
    12. Contact Candidates who are running for Office in 2015 or 2016 and ask them to support our ballot initiative. If they cannot support Legalizing Cannabis, they need to support Mississippi’s Right to Vote For Change: yes or no.

  2. I am so excited about this! Money for schools, more jobs will be created, those who are sick could get better medicine…the list goes on! Those who are sick should not have to worry about going to jail, and viewed as criminals because we choose a safer alternative. I am currently in remission from stage 4 head and neck cancer. I had a tumor the size of a lime in my face. I started smoking marijuana shortly after i started chemo. Marijuana turned my nausea pain into hunger and I was able to eat. I still continue to use today because with the radiation to my head face and neck damaging so much tissue, i have no desire to eat. The right side of my face is basically paralyzed from nerve damage due to the tumor. I can barely taste or smell. Thanks to marijuana, I didn’t get addicted to any of the medications i was given. And they were all pretty strong! My oncologist was aware of me smoking. He responded “i don’t care if you smoke five joints a day. If it works, do it.” So i did. It prevented me from getting a feeding tube, and i was able to work on maintaining my weight. Please Mississippi! We need this! You don’t have to be a consumer to be for the legalization of marijuana. Just please, do your research, and think about the millions who are ill and could benefit from this.

  3. Thank you for printing this article and bringing awareness to our ballot initiative to legalize and regulate cannabis in MS. I have multiple sclerosis and get more relief from cannabis for the neuropathic pain I suffer than the opiates I am prescribed. Again, I thank you for printing this article.

  4. Thanks for putting this article in your paper. It will help spread the word. Initiative bi48 is fair to everyone involved. It would help the people that needs the medical marijuana and also the people that might like to farm it. In the initiative, it would get the nonviolent marijuana offenders out of our prisons. And save thousands of Mississippi dollars. The biggest point is that the taxes from it would help our schools in so many ways. I want to thank you for taking the time to print this in your news paper.

    David Throckmorton
    Olive Branch, Ms

  5. Thank you for reporting on this very important issue, ballot initiative 48. Please continue to keep us apprised on how their progress.

  6. Excellent article!!!! Thanks for covering our battle for legalization in Mississippi! So many here will be helped by this initiative–those who are ill, farmers, small business owners–the list goes on!

  7. I think the folks in Mississippi .Should have the right to use cannabis especially for chronic illnesses.and a totally legal aspect.just think of the revenue it would bring for schools and a number of other fundings that are greatly needed in our fine state.


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