South Dakota votes to legalise marijuana for people over 21

  • South Dakota’s proposed Constitutional Amendment A was passed with 53.4% of the vote.
  • The amendment legalizes the “possession, use, transport, and distribution of marijuana and marijuana paraphernalia by people age 21 and older.”
  • It also sets the limit of marijuana one can possess or distribute at a time to 1 ounce.
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South Dakota has voted to legalise marijuana use for adults.

Constitutional Amendment A, which passed with 53.4% of the vote, “legalizes the possession, transportation, use, and distribution of marijuana and marijuana paraphernalia by people who are 21 or older.”

The summary text for South Dakota’s Constitutional Amendment A reads as follows:

This constitutional amendment legalizes the possession, use, transport, and distribution of marijuana and marijuana paraphernalia by people age 21 and older. Individuals may possess or distribute one ounce or less of marijuana. Marijuana plants and marijuana produced from those plants may also be possessed under certain conditions.

The amendment authorizes the State Department of Revenue (“Department”) to issue marijuana-related licenses for commercial cultivators and manufacturers, testing facilities, wholesalers, and retailers. Local governments may regulate or ban the establishment of licensees within their jurisdictions.

The Department must enact rules to implement and enforce this amendment. The amendment requires the Legislature to pass laws regarding medical use of marijuana. The amendment does not legalise hemp; it requires the Legislature to pass laws regulating the cultivation, processing, and sale of hemp.

The amendment imposes a 15% tax on marijuana sales. The tax revenue will be used for the Department’s costs incurred in implementing this amendment, with remaining revenue equally divided between the support of public schools and the State general fund.

Judicial clarification of the amendment may be necessary. The amendment legalizes some substances that are considered felony controlled substances under current State law. Marijuana remains illegal under Federal law.

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