Judge: City must return marijuana ordinance on ballot

West Virginia
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CLARKSBURG, W.Va. (AP) — A federal judge is ordering a city in West Virginia to put an ordinance that would decriminalize marijuana back on the June 4 ballot.

U.S. District Judge Thomas S. Kleeh decided on Friday that Salem city officials must return the “Sensible Marijuana Ordinance” on the ballot after the city removed it in February, citing concerns the ordinance may not stand up against existing state law after receiving an opinion from the West Virginia Secretary of State’s Office.

Kleeh said removing the ordinance infringed on the plaintiff’s First Amendment rights, but ordered the plaintiff’s to pay the $500 bond to cover the city’s cost of reprinting the ballots.

According to the proposed ordinance, marijuana possession would still be against the law in Salem, but penalties for simple marijuana possession.

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