Medical marijuana advocates ask South Dakota lawmakers for compromise  (Audio)

February 23, 2021

PIERRE, S.D. (AP) – Supporters of a successful ballot measure to make medical marijuana legal in South Dakota are urging state lawmakers to allow users to avoid criminal charges during any delay in implementing the program.

Gov. Kristi Noem and Republican legislative leaders are pushing to delay the program for a year, arguing they need the time to study the issue and set up a comprehensive medical pot program.

Medical marijuana groups called for lawmakers to allow people who are charged with marijuana possession beginning July 1 to avoid convictions by presenting a statement from a medical practitioner showing they have a “debilitating medical condition.”

Melissa Mentele is the executive director of “New Approach South Dakota.” She says there is support for the proposed compromise among legislators….

Medical marijuana was approved by 70 percent of South Dakota voters in the November 3rd general election.