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Another Ohio City Approves Local Marijuana Decriminalization Initiative At The Ballot

Another Ohio city has approved a local ballot measure to decriminalize marijuana.

The city of Helena, which has a population of just over 200 people, passed the reform measure in a 15-8 vote during the primary election earlier this month.

More than three dozen Ohio localities have now enacted decriminalization through the local ballot in recent years.

Last November, voters decided on decriminalization in five jurisdictions: Corning, Hemlock, Kent, Laurelville, Rushville and Shawnee.

Activists said that they met the requirements to qualify a decriminalization measure in Helena that year too, but officials declined to officially certify it and it was subsequently subject to litigation in court. The initiative was then certified for this month’s election and prevailed.

Prior to last year’s election, more than two dozen jurisdictions across the state had already adopted local statues effectively decriminalizing possession—some of which have been passed by voter initiatives while others were adopted by city councils in major cities like Cincinnati, Columbus and Cleveland.

Activists with the groups Sensible Movement Coalition and NORML Appalachia of Ohio have continued to work the local reform angle as statewide decriminalization and legalization efforts have stalled in the state.

That said, advocates are increasingly optimistic that all Ohioans

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