Marijuana question qualifies for South Portland ballot

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SOUTH PORTLAND — City officials confirmed Wednesday that a citizen initiative to make recreational possession of small amounts of marijuana legal for adults over age 21 has qualified for the November ballot.

The City Council will consider the petition in its next meeting, Aug. 4. Mayor Jerry Jalbert has said the council will not try to keep the question off the ballot.

Citizens for a Safer Maine, a local coalition backed by the national Marijuana Policy Project, submitted more than 1,500 signatures from South Portland registered voters. The petition needed only 959 to qualify for the ballot.

“We hope to see as much support and enthusiasm among City Council members as we have among voters,” MPP Maine political director David Boyer said in a prepared statement Wednesday.