AP: State certifies application for marijuana ballot initiative in Alaska

By Mark Thiessen
June 14, 2013

Alaska will be the next battleground in the effort to legalize marijuana.

Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell, whose office oversees elections, on Friday certified a ballot initiative application that would make it legal for adults to possess up to one ounce of marijuana.

Supporters will have one year to collect 30,169 signatures from qualified voters across the state to get the question on the ballot. They want to get it done by January and have it on next year’s primary ballot, said petition sponsor Tim Hinterberger.

The effort in Alaska comes after voters in Washington state and Colorado legalized marijuana last year.

“It really seems like the whole mood has radically shifted,” Hinterberger said.

He said the conversation is no longer about whether marijuana should be legalized, and opponents aren’t “trotting out the old propaganda — it’s a gateway, leads to crime and causes brain damage.

“Everybody assumes it’s going to happen, and now it’s just figuring out the details,” he said.

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