Arkansas Court Dismisses Case Over Recreational Marijuana Measure

A demonstrator prepares to smoke marijuana during the “Cultivate Your Rights” march demanding its legalization, in Santiago, on May 18, 2019. (Photo by Martin BERNETTI / AFP) (Photo credit should read MARTIN BERNETTI/AFP/Getty Images)

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — The Arkansas Supreme Court says a group’s bid to force the attorney general to approve the wording of a recreational marijuana measure is moot since lawmakers have changed the process for certifying ballot initiatives.

Justices dismissed the petition Thursday by Arkansas True Grass, which asked the court to compel Attorney General Leslie Rutledge to certify the wording of its proposed constitutional amendment.

The court said the group’s request is moot after the Legislature removed the attorney general’s authority to approve popular names and ballot titles for initiative petitions before groups can circulate petitions. Under the new law, groups file a draft of the proposal with the secretary of state before circulating petitions. The state Board of Election Commissioners reviews ballot measures’ wording after petitions are submitted under the new law.

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