The Arkansas Supreme Court today dismissed as moot a request by Arkansas True Grass to require the attorney general to certify the form of their proposal to legalize marijuana in Arkansas.
The court said the issue was moot because of a new law from the recent legislative session that ended attorney general review of ballot initiatives.
True Grass has attempted to qualify a ballot initiative since 2016 and got approval for the form of one proposal but couldn’t gather enough signatures to put it to a vote. A proposal for the 2020 ballot was rejected by Attorney General Leslie Rutledge in November. True Grass sought court intervention. March 14, Rutledge asked that the appeal be dismissed.
She argues that Act 387 removed the Attorney General’s authority to approve popular names and ballot titles for initiative petitions and that sponsors now need only file a draft of the proposed amendment, popular name, and ballot title with the Secretary of State before circulating the petitions for signatures. Thus, the Attorney General argues that if we were to order her to certify the proposed popular name and ballot title as Arkansas True Grass asks us to do, it would have no practical legal effect on the parties because the Attorney General’s certification is no longer required. We agree.
The True Grass Facebook page indicates its efforts to qualify a legalization measure continue.
The new law sets new strict requirements for ballot drives, including putting the cost of advertising them on the sponsors.