Legalizing recreational marijuana: Will Ohio be next? –

Products are hung at the 20 Past 4 store in Jackson County, Michigan.

The retail area at 20 Past 4 Provisioning Center, 3590 Ann Arbor Road in Leoni Township, on Wednesday, Jan. 15, 2020.

Recreational marijuana flower is arranged at 20 Past 4 in Jackson County, Michigan.


LIMA — Ohio could become the next state to join the growing list that has legalized recreational marijuana.

The last decade has brought sweeping reform of marijuana laws across the country. Nineteenstates, as well as Guam and Washington, D.C., have made recreational marijuana legal, or are in the process of doing so, in some form for anyone older than 21. Each state has its own different stipulations, but the movement has been gaining momentum, especially as of late. New York, Virginia, New Mexico and Connecticut all approved legalization measures in 2021 alone.

The charge into Oho is being led by The Coalition to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol, which will need to amass 130,000 petition signatures to bring the legislation to Columbus. Should they get those signatures, the legislature will have four months to decide to pass or reject the bill.

If the Ohio legislature chooses not to pass anything, the coalition will need to generate an additional 130,000 signatures to keep hopes alive for marijuana reform in Ohio. If they do, the issue would be taken up by Ohioans in the 2022 general election.

Coalition spokesman Tom Haren said that his group has high hopes for getting a bill passed in the Ohio General Assembly.

“We’re actually confident that we’re going to get it passed through the General Assembly. We’re laser focused on doing that,”

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