Arizona marijuana supporters turn in nearly 260,000 signatures f - Tucson News Now

Arizona marijuana supporters turn in nearly 260,000 signatures for ballot measure

A group that supports legalizing recreational marijuana in Arizona submitted more than 258,000 signatures to get the measure on the November ballot. (Source: KPHO/KTVK) A group that supports legalizing recreational marijuana in Arizona submitted more than 258,000 signatures to get the measure on the November ballot. (Source: KPHO/KTVK)
The group needs at least 150,000 verified signatures to get the measure on the November ballot. (Source: KPHO/KTVK) The group needs at least 150,000 verified signatures to get the measure on the November ballot. (Source: KPHO/KTVK)
The Arizona Chamber of Commerce opposes the ballot initiative. (Source: KPHO/KTVK) The Arizona Chamber of Commerce opposes the ballot initiative. (Source: KPHO/KTVK)
MESA, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) -

The campaign to legalize recreational marijuana filed over 258,000 signatures with the state to place the issue on the ballot in November.

The tally was well over the 150,000 the Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol needed to qualify.

[RELATED: Campaign to legalize marijuana in Arizona hits another milestone]

“We are very encouraged by the strong levels of support and enthusiasm we found among voters during the petition drive,” chairman J.P. Holyoak said in a press release on Thursday.

State election officials still need to certify the paperwork.

But this sets the stage for a major campaign battle pitting the pro-pot coalition against some of the state's most powerful business interests.

"We're all in on this," said Garrick Taylor, a spokesman for the Arizona Chamber of Commerce and Industry

The business group has already donated $120,000 to the opposition.

[READ MORE: Valley Chamber of Commerce says legalizing marijuana bad for business]

Taylor says many businesses are concerned this would give Arizona a negative image and make difficult to recruit new companies.

Should voters approve the measure, anyone over 21 years old could carry small amounts of marijuana.

In addition, most of the tax revenue from the sale of pot would go to fund education.

A recent state report estimates legal marijuana sales would generate additional $80 million for Arizona. ?

Copyright 2016 KPHO/KTVK (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.


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