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Third Petition For Recreational Marijuana OK'd For Signature Collecting

LANSING (WWJ/AP) - The State Board of Canvassers has approved yet another initiative to legalize recreational cannabis across Michigan.

Abrogate Prohibition Michigan must now collect roughly 315,000 valid voter signatures to qualify the constitutional amendment for the November 2016 statewide ballot. The petition, as approved Tuesday, would fully legalize the use of the cannabis plant in Michigan, allowing for recreational, medicinal, agricultural and other uses. It would not allow marijuana taxes or any regulation to diminish use.

Earlier this year, groups began gathering signatures for two other ballot measures that would legalize recreational marijuana use and regulate the drug. One initiative is being led by traditional marijuana activists. The other has backing from a Republican political operative working on the behalf of anonymous business interests.

It's uncertain if any proposal will make it to a public vote.

Advocates have said Michigan could add jobs and tax revenue by legalizing and regulating marijuana for recreational purposes. Some estimate that marijuana taxation could generate as much as $200 million a year for the state.

Michigan already allows marijuana use for medical purposes and more than a dozen communities have voted to decriminalize possession of the drug. The decriminalization measures put the communities in potential conflict with state law. Michigan currently bans marijuana use and possession unless it's medical.

TM and © Copyright 2015 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2015 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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