Thurston files document with Supreme Court stating amendment is not sufficient September 13, 2022 By Griffin Coop After an order by the state Supreme Court set off a bit of confusion Monday, Arkansas Secretary of State John Thurston and the state attorney general’s official filed official documentation Tuesday declaring a recreational marijuana amendment’s ballot title to be insufficient based on a state board’s determination last month, Thurston’s spokesman said Tuesday. In the document filed with the court Tuesday afternoon, Thurston stated the facts related to the petition process over the past month. Thurston’s document stated, as he said last month, he found that the amendment’s sponsor, Responsible Growth Arkansas, had filed more than enough signatures to qualify for the ballot. Thurston also stated that the state Board of Election Commissioners voted not to certify the ballot title and popular name of the amendment. Thurston concluded by stating, “Therefore, pursuant to A.C.A. subsection 7-9-11(i)(4)(B), I declare the proposed ballot measure insufficient for inclusion on the ballot for the election at which the statewide initiative petition or statewide referendum petition would be considered.” The Supreme Court issued an order Monday directing Thurston to “decide the sufficiency of the proposed initiative petition.” Members of the secretary of state’s office were initially confused about the order as were members of the attorney general’s office, according to Kevin Niehaus, spokesman for the secretary of state’s office. The office eventually determined the order was directing Thurston to issue an official determination on the decision made by the state Board of Election Commissioners last month. On Aug. 3, the board voted unanimously not to certify the ballot title for the Arkansas Adult Use Cannabis Amendment sponsored by Responsible Growth Arkansas. After the state board voted down the ballot title last month, Responsible Growth quickly appealed the decision to the Supreme Court. The court received written arguments from the state as well as two ballot question committees who the court allowed to intervene in the case. Safe and Secure Communities and Save Arkansas from Epidemic joined the case and filed briefs before Responsible Growth filed the final brief in the case on September 2. Thurston announced last month that his office had verified more than enough signatures for the amendment to make the ballot. Amendments needed 89,151 verified signatures to make the ballot this year and Responsible Growth turned in more than 192,000. Last month, the Supreme Court ordered that the amendment be placed on the ballot provisionally, meaning the Supreme Court’s final ruling will determine whether or not votes will be counted on the issue.