24 October 2016
North Dakota Medical Marijuana Legalization, Initiated Statutory Measure 5 (2016)
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North Dakota Medical Marijuana Legalization, Initiated Statutory Measure 5
On the ballot
WHAT’S ON YOUR BALLOT?
Initiated Statutory Measure 5
A “yes” vote supports legalizing the use of medical marijuana to treat defined debilitating medical conditions, such as cancer, AIDS, hepatitis C, ALS, glaucoma, and epilepsy, and developing certain procedures for regulating medical marijuana growing, dispensing, and usage.
A “no” vote opposes legalizing the use of medical marijuana to treat defined debilitating medical conditions, such as cancer, AIDS, hepatitis C, ALS, glaucoma, and epilepsy, keeping the state’s full prohibition of marijuana use.
Under the specifications of the measure, patients would need identification cards listing specific criteria. The act is known as the “North Dakota Compassionate Care Act.”
A similar measure failed to reach the North Dakota ballot in 2012 after thousands of signatures were determined to be fraudulent.
Looking for more information about marijuana on the ballot in 2016? Explore other Ballotpedia articles on the subject below.
Recreational marijuana on the ballot
Medical marijuana on the ballot
Measure 5 was designed to allow medical marijuana treatment for patients with the following debilitating medical conditions:
- Cancer and its treatments
- Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)
- Acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS)
- Decompensated cirrhosis (Hepatitis C)
- Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS or Lou Gehrig’s disease)
- Post-tramautic stress disorder (PTSD)
- Agitation of Alzheimer’s disease, dementia, or the treatment of these conditions
- Crohn’s disease or Fibromyalgia
- Spinal stenosis or chronic back pain including neuropathy or damage to the nervous tissue of the spinal cord with objective neurological indication of intractable spasticity
- Any other medical condition or its treatment added by the North Dakota Department of Health
- A chronic or debilitating disease or medical condition or its treatment that produces one or more of the following: cachexia or wasting syndrome; severe debilitating pain that has not responded to previously prescribed medication or surgical measures for more than three months or for which other treatment options produced serious side effects; intractable nausea; seizures; or severe and persistent muscle spasms, including but not limited to those characteristic of multiple sclerosis
Patients may petition the North Dakota Department of Health to add to the list of qualifying medical conditions.
The measure was designed to require patients and designated caregivers to apply for registry identification cards in order to participate in the medical marijuana compassionate care program. The patient application would have to include certain documentation, a written certification from the applicant’s physician, and an application fee.
Designated caregivers would be responsible for treating one to five qualified patients, and can be qualified patients themselves. The designated caregiver application would have to include certain documentation verifying identity, written approval and contact information from qualified patient(s), and a criminal history screening/background check. An individual convicted of a felony offense would not be able to serve as a designated caregiver.
Text of measure
The petition title is as follows:
This initiated measure would add a new chapter to Title 19 of the North Dakota Century Code creating an Act providing for the medical use of marijuana for defined debilitating medical conditions, such as cancer, AIDS, hepatitis C, ALS, glaucoma, and epilepsy. To participate in the program, the Act would create identification cards with specific criteria before they can be issued by the Department of Health for patients, caregivers, compassion centers and other facilities. The Act would create procedures for monitoring, inventorying, dispensing, and cultivation and growing of marijuana to be regulated and enforced by the Department of Health. A qualified patient could be dispensed up to three ounces of usable marijuana. For violations, the Act would authorize the Department of Health to provide for corrective action, suspension, revocation, appeal, hearings, and referral for criminal prosecution. The Act would require the Department of Health to submit an annual report to the legislature regarding program statistics.
Estimated fiscal impact statement
The fiscal impact is as follows:
The fiscal note prepared by the State Department of Health states the fiscal impact of the statutory measure would total $12.6 million in additional expenditures and $6 million in revenue through June 30, 2019. The fiscal impact to the department would be an estimated $7.4 million in expenditures and $4.8 million in revenue for the 2017-19 biennium. The department estimates, if implemented in December 2016, expenditures of up to $2.4 million, including $1.4 million of one-time costs, and revenues of $1.2 million during the 2015-17 biennium for an impact of $9.8 million in expenditures and $6 million in revenue to the department through June 30, 2019. The fiscal note also stated the fiscal impact to the Attorney General would total $2.8 million in additional expenditures during the 2017-19 biennium.
The full text of the measure can be found here.
Initiated Statutory Measure 5 is sponsored by North Dakotans for Compassionate Care. The following is a list of committee members:
- Rilie Ray Morgan, chairperson
- Patricia J. Wilhelm
- Bill Wilhelm
- Martin J. Riske
- Anita P. Morgan
- Sandra L. Banish
- Sandra C. Wallner
- Tracy Vearrier
- Gerald A. Novacek
- Cari Oye
- John Dean Morgan
- John Strand
- Richard A. Gartner
- Barbara Kay Bue
- Larry Grinaker
- Maxine Schmidt
- Victoria Aasand
- Ernest Hoffert
- Scott Anderson
- Stanley Hoglund
- Robert L. Labonte
- Mary L Rennich
- Kory Bjerke
- Gary Skeim
- Richard Stenerson
- Don Hutson
- Greg W. Anderson
Arguments in favor
Rilie Ray Morgan, sponsor of the initiative, said:
Even though we are a conservative state, I think most of the voters in this state would view this as an alternative to prescription drugs that we know are harmful.
- North Dakota Medical Association
The North Dakota Medical Association said the following in opposition to Measure 5:
The North Dakota Medical Association opposed medical marijuana in the 2015 legislative session and our opposition continues today. The proposed petition would be very difficult to implement in a safe and cost-effective manner. Furthermore, medical marijuana has not been tested or vetted through the Federal Drug Administration’s protocols; all other pharmaceuticals are required to pass this process before consumption. Therefore, dosage, side effects, and contraindications of medical marijuana are not fully known. As an organization that holds evidence-based medicine in the highest regard, the North Dakota Medical Association cannot endorse medical marijuana.
Total campaign contributions
as of October 19, 2016
Three campaign committees are registered in support of Measure 5, while none are registered in opposition as of October 2016. The contribution and expenditure totals below were current as of October 19, 2016.
ND Compassionate Care 2016
North Dakota Compassionate Care 2016
North Dakotans for Medical Marijuana
The following are the top donors for the support campaign as of October 19, 2016:
Martin J. Riske
Ballotpedia has not found campaign finance reports filed in opposition to Measure 5. If you are aware of campaign finance opposing the measure, please email it to email@example.com.
Other 2016 measures
Another marijuana-related measure, North Dakota Legalization of Marijuana Initiative (2016), was submitted for the 2016 ballot. The measure would have legalized recreational marijuana, and though it was not certified for the 2016 ballot, its circulation status did not expire, so supporters could potentially qualify it for the 2018 ballot.
During the 2015 legislative session, the North Dakota House of Representatives defeated two bills that would have legalized medical marijuana. In February, a measure that would have added the legalization of medical marijuana to state statutes and provided for the regulation of the medical marijuana program and penalties for violations was defeated in a 67-26 house vote. A second bill that would have directed the Legislative Management to study the legalization of medical marijuana for individuals with serious medical conditions was defeated in a house vote of 61-32.
See also: Marijuana laws in the United States
As of August 2016, 25 states and Washington, D.C., had passed laws legalizing or decriminalizing medical marijuana. Additionally, 15 states had legalized the use of cannabis oil, or cannabidiol (CBD), one of the non-psychoactive ingredients found in marijuana, for medical purposes. The states shaded in red permitted the use of medical marijuana, while the states shaded in gray in gray did not. The states in purple allowed for the use of CBD in some circumstances but did not allow medical marijuana. The states shaded in light red had certified ballot measures for the 2016 elections proposing the legalization of medical marijuana.
Created with Raphaël @@VERSION
Medical marijuana by
Cannabis oil only (29.41%)
2016 ballot measure (5.88%)
History of marijuana on the ballot
- The first time a marijuana legalization measure appeared on the ballot was in California in 1972, when voters rejected Proposition 19.
- Between 1972 and the end of 2015, voters in 16 states voted on 51 marijuana-related ballot measures. Of these 47 measures, not all were marijuana legalization efforts; some were bans, some were related to medical marijuana, and some were related to taxing medical or recreational marijuana.
- The 1990s was one of the best decades at the polls for supporters of marijuana legalization. In the 1990s, 66 percent of all marijuana-related measures were approved. One measure was a ban, so the approval rate for marijuana legalization measures in the 1990s was 58 percent, which is still higher than the 55 percent approval rate for marijuana measures in the 2010s.
- The first state to legalize medical marijuana was California in 1996. As of the beginning of 2016, the most recent defeat of a medical marijuana measure was in Florida in 2012.
- Voters in Alaska opted to criminalize marijuana through a ballot measure in 1990.
- As of 2015, eleven states have legalized medical marijuana via statewide ballot measure, while Colorado, Washington, Alaska, and Oregon had legalized recreational marijuana via statewide ballot measures.
- Four marijuana-related measures appeared on statewide ballots in November 2014. Two were approved, and two were defeated. Twenty-six potential 2014 marijuana measures failed to make the ballot.
- The two state-wide ballot measures that passed in 2014 were Oregon’s marijuana legalization initiative, Measure 91, and an initiative to legalize marijuana in Alaska called Measure 2. Moreover, voters in Washington, D.C., voted to approve a marijuana legalization measure called Initiative 71, despite strong opposition from members of Congress.
- In 2016, marijuana legalization initiatives were proposed in about 20 states, and, as of May 2016, measures concerning marijuana were certified for the ballot in Florida, Maine, and Nevada. Initiative proponents announced that they had collected enough signatures to potentially put measures on the ballot in several other states as well, including California and Michigan.
A poll conducted in 2014 by the University of North Dakota College of Business and Public Administration found that 47 percent of respondents supported the legalization of medical marijuana, while 41 percent were opposed, and 9 percent were neutral to the legalization of medical marijuana. The poll surveyed 505 North Dakotans who indicated they were likely to vote and had a margin of error of 5 percent.
While this poll is related to the general issue of medical marijuana in North Dakota, as of August 2016, Ballotpedia has not found polls specific to this initiative. If you know of a poll that should be posted here, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Reports and analyses
Secretary of state analysis
The North Dakota Secretary of State’s analysis of Measure 5 is as follows:
Initiated Statutory Measure No. 5 was placed on the ballot by petitions circulated by a sponsoring committee. If approved, this initiated measure would add a new chapter to Title 19 of the North Dakota Century Code creating an Act which provides for the medical use of marijuana for defined medical conditions, such as cancer, AIDS, hepatitis C, ALS, glaucoma, and epilepsy. To participate in the program, the Act would provide for identification cards and certificates of registration which would be issued by the Department of Health for patients, caregivers, and qualified facilities, if all requirements are met. The Act would create provisions for monitoring, inventorying, dispensing, cultivating and growing marijuana to be regulated and enforced by the Department of Health. A qualified patient could be dispensed up to three ounces of usable marijuana, and could grow marijuana if his or her home is located more than forty miles from the nearest registered facility. For violations, the Act would authorize the Department of Health to provide for corrective action, suspension, revocation, appeal, hearings, and referral for criminal prosecution. The Act would require the Department of Health to submit an annual report to the legislature regarding program statistics.
Path to the ballot
The petition was submitted on November 2, 2015, and issued a petition title on November 12, 2015. It was approved for circulation on November 30, 2015. To qualify the measure for the 2016 general election, supporters had to collect 13,452 valid signatures by July 11, 2016. Initiated Statutory Measure 5 qualified for the ballot on August 10, 2016.
Cost of signature collection:
Ballotpedia found no petition companies that received payment from the sponsors of this measure, which means signatures were likely gathered largely by volunteers. A total of $0 was spent to collect the 13,452 valid signatures required to put this measure before voters, resulting in a total cost per required signature (CPRS) of $0.
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