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Five Ohio cities decriminalize cannabis

US: Michigan, Missouri, Utah, Wisconsin in favor of MJ legalization

During the midterm elections in the US, it wasn't just seats in the House and Senate that were at stake. Also on the ballot in several states was legalization of marijuana, with four states voting in favor.

Voters in Michigan have opted to make their state the next to legalize marijuana.

Under Michigan's new legalization law adults will be able to grow up to 12 total marijuana plants at home, possess 2.5 ounces in public and store 10 ounces in their residence—in addition to what they grow legally.

The measure directs state regulators will issue business licenses for cultivators, processors, testing labs, secure transporters, retail outlets and cannabis microbusinesses.

Missouri voters have approved at least one of three medical marijuana measures appearing on the state's ballot on Tuesday.

Under the new law, qualified patients who have approval from their physicians will receive identification cards from the state that will allow them and their registered caregivers to grow up to six marijuana plants and purchase at least four ounces of cannabis from dispensaries on a monthly basis.

Additionally, the state regulators will issue licenses for medical marijuana dispensaries, as well as cultivation, testing and infused product manufacturing businesses.

Voters in Utah, one of the nation's most conservative states, have also opted to legalize medical marijuana.

As written in the ballot measure, qualified patients with physician approval would be issued state identification cards and be allowed to purchase two ounces of medical marijuana or products containing 10 grams of cannabidiol or tetrahydrocannabinol from a dispensary during any two-week period.

The state would issue licenses for medical cannabis cultivation, processing, testing and dispensing businesses. Municipalities would be allowed to regulate, though not ban, medical marijuana businesses.

Voters in at least 14 out of 16 counties across Wisconsin have signaled strong support for marijuana reform, voting in the affirmative on advisory questions asking whether voters approve of various legalization and decriminalization policies.

The advisory questions are non-binding, meaning that they won’t translate into actual policy changes. Rather, the purpose of the questions is to gauge public sentiment, which could help inform future legislation—as seemed to be in the case when Massachusetts went through a similar process in 2014.

Five out of six Ohio cities that had local marijuana decriminalization measures on the ballot have passed the initiatives, including in the state’s sixth most populous city.

Decriminalization passed in Dayton, Fremont, Norwood, Oregon and Windham. Voters in Garrettsville rejected the local measure, though.

Currently, getting caught possessing up to 200 grams of cannabis is a misdemeanor in Ohio, punishable by a $150 to $250 fine and up to 30 days in jail, depending on the exact amount. These measures won’t affect state law, but it will help protect cannabis consumers in municipalities that approve the initiatives through local ordinances.

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