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State Will Not Appeal Marijuana Initiative Ruling
Division of Elections Will Count Petition Booklet Signatures


October 21, 2003
Tuesday - 12:15 am

Anchorage - Lieutenant Governor Loren Leman announced Monday morning that the State will not appeal Judge John Suddock's ruling in Hinterberger, et al v. State of Alaska. The case involves an initiative petition entitled: "An Initiative requiring the State of Alaska to vote on an Act to decriminalize and regulate cannabis (hemp including marijuana)."

The State maintains that the Division of Elections, in its decision to disqualify 194 petition booklets, did so according to requirements in law. Although he disagrees with some of the assumptions made in Suddock's decision that the Division of Elections (under a previous Administration) was negligent, Leman agreed that the Division of Elections can be more helpful and rules pertaining to initiatives need to be simplified and clarified. He announced that the Division of Elections will seek changes to statute during the next session of the Legislature and make changes to its own regulations.

"The initiative is an important constitutional right and I want Alaskans to be able to use it," stated Leman. "Clearer rules and simplified forms will make it easier for future initiative sponsors."

The Division of Elections will continue to move forward on verifying the signatures in the 194 booklets that had previously been disqualified. If a sufficient number of valid signatures are counted, the initiative will be given to the Lieutenant Governor for certification.


Source of News Release:

Office of the Lt. Governor
Web Site


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