I-502 is Washington state’s marijuana legalization initiative, which is set to appear on the November general election ballot. Some medical marijuana growers and advocates are now suing to have the measure removed from the ballot, claiming that it does not warn voters of the measure’s costs.
The lawsuit has been filed by Steve Sarich, a medical marijuana grower and advocate. He is joined by medical marijuana advocates Arthur West and John C. Worthington, as well as Saroj Sidhu, a woman arrested during medical marijuana collective raids earlier this year. The lawsuit was filed last week in King Country Superior Court.
In their lawsuit, the opponents allege, ““The (Office of Financial Management) deliberately suppressed the foreseeable financial impacts of I-502. [The initiative will have] unknown and possibly ruinous costs, the full and reasonably foreseeable extent of which have been deliberately suppressed under a cloud of politically motivated and partisan misdirection.”
The state Office of Financial Management will evaluate the measure and must issue their opinion about whether it will have a positive or negative impact on the state if passed by voters by August 10th.
In addition to the cost of the measure, opponents of the initiative are worried that the impaired driving limitations imposed under I-502 would penalize patients who had previously smoked marijuana but are physically okay to drive. I-502 would also greatly impact the state’s medical marijuana program, as patients would be able to access their medicine more simply, eliminating the current demand for MMJ doctors, growers, and collectives.
Attorneys for the state have not yet responded to the lawsuit. It is expected that they will do so in a matter of weeks.