Proposal to legalize marijuana in Ohio possibly on ballot in 2015

The Northeast Ohio Media Group via reports that pro-marijuana group Responsible Ohio released a plan on Tuesday that seeks to get a proposed constitutional amendment legalizing marijuana in Ohio on the ballot in November 2015. The article reports that the group, comprised of investors as well as public relations and ballot initiative firms, will submit official amendment language in a few weeks. According to WOSU, Responsible Ohio modeled its proposal on existing liquor laws in Ohio. Purchasers would have to be 21, and both production and sales of the drug would be strictly regulated. provides some highlights of the proposal. Among other details, the plan:

  • Limits marijuana growing to ten sites, with five additional sites to test the product for both safety and potency,
  • Creates a Marijuana Control Commission to regulate the industry. It would be comprised of seven members, appointed by the governor, including medical, legal, law enforcement and business professionals, as well as a member of the public.
  • Calls for a 15% tax on every aspect of marijuana production and sales, in addition to already existing taxes on sales and commercial activity,
  • Provides that medical marijuana would be available tax-free to those holding a prescription,
  • Limits retail stores to 1 for every 10,000 Ohioans, and
  • Prohibits facilities participating in any aspect of marijuana production or sales within 1000 feet of places such as elementary and secondary schools, among other locations.

WOSU reports that another group is considering attempting to get a different legalization proposal to voters this year, but details have not yet emerged about that plan. Photo credit: United States Fish and Wildlife Service, via Wikipedia.