Cannabis
By
Alex
April 22, 2021

STATE OF MISSISSIPPI OVERTURNING IT'S CANNABIS LEGALIZATION?

Cannabis was legalized in Mississippi on November 3, 2020, by voters who voted to approve measure 65, thereby legalizing the use of medical marijuana in the state. However, this giant step was overruled by the Supreme Court of Mississippi on May 14, 2021. It's, therefore, necessary to know the details of this overturning. This article will state everything you need to know about the overturning of cannabis legalization in Mississippi and where the state stands now on cannabis legalization.

What happened?

Medical marijuana law was approved by 74.1 percent of Mississippi voters in November, making cannabis legal for people with some medical conditions. Initiative 65 and initiative 65A were the two medicinal cannabis bills on the ballot at the time. Initiative 65, which was placed on the ballot by advocates and is thought to be more patient-centered, was passed.

Mississippi officials attempted to disqualify the state's cannabis legalization bill before the referendum, saying that it was illegally put on the ballot.

According to Mississippi law, eligible elector signatures from each congressional district must not exceed one-fifth (1/5) of the total number of signatures needed to qualify an initiative petition for placement on the ballot.

The issue is that the policy was written when the state had five congressional districts, which has since been reduced to four. Since the policy was not revised, it resulted in inconsistencies.

Legislation History

In 2014, Gov. Phil Bryant signed a law regarded as HB1231 after a young girl was diagnosed with a severe form of epilepsy. The law provides affirmative protection for the possession and use of CBD oil or resin, which contains at least 15 percent CBD, or if liquid, not more than 50 milligrams CBD per liter and, if not more than 0,5%THC, for patients with chronic epileptic disorder as well as for parents or guardians.

Mississippians supported Initiative 65 in the November 2020 election, which authorized cannabis as a medicinal treatment for 22 qualifying diseases. In addition, it established a framework for physicians to recommend medicinal marijuana for individuals with debilitating illnesses and allow those patients or their caretakers to purchase, possess, and use cannabis medicine.

The bill also allowed the Health Ministry to set up the system by August 2021 and to start issuing patient ID and distribution licenses. The state legislature had put forth an alternate proposal, Initiative65A, leaving all the details up to an unidentified state agency but requiring to seek the input of healthcare practitioners in the program design. Voterspreferred the more straightforward road to medical marijuana legalization.

But it didn't go as legalization proponents expected. The mayor of Madison requested the state's Supreme Court to dismiss the petition for Initiative 65 immediately before the election. Even though more than 70 percent of voters sided with legalization, in May 2021, the court sided with the opponents. The court considers the petition unconstitutional since the state's constitution requires an equal number of signatures from five congressional districts, but there are currently four districts after redistricting in 2000. A dissenting court decried the verdict as the end of the state's citizen initiative mechanism. Patient advocates plan to continue the fight.

Is weed legal in Mississippi?

In 2021 Mississippi was legally subject to medical marijuana after voters approved the November 2020 referendum. The Supreme Court of the State, however, decided to take technical action. Thus, in the Magnolia State, all cannabis use is illegal. However, CBD oil is legal for weakened epilepsy patients with a minimum of 15% CBD and a maximum of 0,5% THC.

The possession of up to 30 g or ten grams of cannabis is punishable by the first conviction at a fine of $100 to $250 (one ounce) or synthetic cannabinoids. There are further fines for subsequent crimes and for having more significant numbers.

While the future is still uncertain, it's sure that the people in Mississippi will request a vote on the legalization of recreational cannabis. Although states usually legalize medical marijuana first, which also applies in the case of Mississippi. In the November 2020 election of the Mississippians, Initiative 65 was approved to legitimize the use of cannabis in 22 qualified conditions as medical treatment. However, for procedural reasons, the State Supreme Court subsequently annulled the initiative.

Conclusion

Over time the state will have to look deeper into the overruling. To learn more, kindly visit serviceganja.

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