Matthew Abel on WXYZ: Enough signatures collected to put marijuana, wage measures on ballot

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LANSING, Mich. (AP) – Michigan’s elections bureau says enough signatures have been gathered for ballot initiatives to legalize marijuana for recreational use and repeal a law requiring higher wages on state construction projects.

The Board of State Canvassers will meet Thursday to consider certifying the petitions after the bureau released staff reports Monday. If the bipartisan board agrees with the findings, the proposed legislation will go to the Republican-led Legislature.

If legislators do not act within 40 days, the proposals will get a statewide vote in November.

After the elections bureau pulled a larger sample of the anti-“prevailing” wage initiative petitions, it determined that roughly 277,000 of 362,000 signatures are valid. That is about 25,000 more than is needed. The bureau also estimates that marijuana legalization proponents turned in 277,000 valid signatures.

A spokesperson for the Coalition to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol released this statement to 7 Action News:

“This is one more major step along the path to ending the failure of marijuana prohibition in Michigan and stopping the massive waste of law enforcement resources that results from it. Regulation and taxation will bring much needed jobs and revenue for Michigan schools, roads and local governments that will benefit the entire state.”