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Legalization Initiative Fails to Qualify For Maine Ballot

AUGUSTA –– An effort to legalize recreational use of marijuana in Maine did not qualify for the November ballot, according to state election officials.

Secretary of State Matt Dunlap said in a statement that the proposal did not have enough valid signatures of Maine voters. The campaign needed 61,123 signatures. According to Dunlap’s office, the campaign only provided 51,543 valid signatures.

The Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol now has 10 days to appeal the decision. An appeal would be reviewed in Maine Superior Court.

Campaign leader David Boyer said they were “very disappointed” with the Secretary of State office’s determination that 17,000 signatures apparently from a single notary did not match the signatures on file.

“We will be exploring all legal avenues that are available to appeal this decision and sincerely hope that more than 17,000 Maine citizens will not be disenfranchised because of a handwriting technicality,” Boyer said.

The campaign turned in 99,229 signatures on Feb. 1. [Read more at the Portland Press-Herald]

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