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Ohio pot legalization group falls short on signatures

[Dmytro Tyshchenko / Shutterstock]
Marijuana leaves

A group seeking to legalize possessing and growing marijuana in Ohio has failed to gather enough signatures to put the issue in front of state lawmakers.

Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose sent Coalition to Legalize Marijuana Like Alcohol a letter Monday saying the group submitted 119,825 valid signatures. That's 13,062 short of what was needed.

Group spokesperson Tom Haren said he's confident enough signatures will be gathered before a Jan. 14 deadline.

Lawmakers will have four months to act on the proposal if enough valid signatures are collected. The group can gather an additional 133,000 valid signatures to put a measure on a statewide ballot if lawmakers don't act.

Republican Rep. Jamie Callender (R-Concord) introduced a bill to legalize marijuana for personal use for adults ages 21 and up in October of last year. Democrats Rep. Casey Weinstein (D-Hudson) and Rep. Terrance Upchurch (D-Cleveland) introduced their own bill in July of last year.