Pot legalization approved in South Portland, defeated in Lewiston

November 5th, 2014 by admin Leave a reply »

A push to legalize recreational marijuana in two Maine cities ended in a split result Tuesday, with voters in South Portland narrowly approving an ordinance in support of legalization and Lewiston residents soundly rejecting the idea.

In South Portland, residents voted 6,326 to 5,755 in favor of an ordinance that declares it legal for adults to possess small amounts of the drug. Lewiston residents rejected a similar ordinance by a vote of 7,366 to 6,044.

Additional Images

Advocates celebrate voter approval Tuesday of a South Portland referendum to legalize possession of small amounts of marijuana by adults. David Boyer, right, is political director of the group leading the legalization movement in the state.

Citizen-initiated referendum questions in both cities asked voters to pass ordinances declaring it legal for adults over 21 years old to possess small amounts of marijuana for private, recreational use.

The Lewiston and South Portland votes are seen largely as symbolic because marijuana possession remains illegal under state and federal law, and local police say enforcement won’t change. But the outcomes will serve as indicators of the state’s appetite for legalization, and whether a future statewide referendum on the question might add Maine to the legalization movement.

“We’re happy that South Portland residents have chosen a policy based on facts not fear,” said David Boyer, Maine political director of the Marijuana Policy Project, which is leading the legalization movement in the state.

South Portland approved the measure 52 percent to 48 percent.

Boyer said he anticipated the vote would be close in

Article source: http://www.pressherald.com/2014/11/04/south-portland-voters-support-legalizing-recreational-marijuana/