All States With Cannabis Ballot Measures Approve Legalization

Cannabis 2020 Election

Cannabis ballot initiatives have passed! According to CNN, as of Wednesday morning voters chose to legalize cannabis use in Arizona, Montana, South Dakota, Mississippi, and New Jersey. Additionally, Oregon and Washington D.C. approved decriminalization measures for psychedelic plants, and Oregon passed a psilocybin therapy initiative. Since voters approved these measures, state legislatures are gearing up to organize the regulatory structures needed to begin approving business ventures. The following projections were reported previously by MJ Business Daily.


The proposal to legalize adult-use cannabis passed with a significant majority. Re-wording of the ballot initiative to include striking prior marijuana convictions sparked more voters to support legalization. Medical use has already been legalized and regulated in Arizona. Currently, only a few independent operators for medical marijuana exist in Arizona, and a recreational market will drastically increase that number. Arizona will offer 26 social equity licenses to newcomers in the adult-use market. 

Projected first-year sales: $375-$400 million

Adult-Use or Medical: Adult-use (recreational), Proposition 207


Coronavirus almost halted the process of getting the number of signatures needed to put Initiative 190 on the ballot. However, once stay-at-home orders were lifted, activists worked hard to collect the 76,400 petition signatures needed. Their efforts to legalize adult-use cannabis were worth it, and the ballot passed with no limit on the number of licenses issued. Existing medical operators will get a 12-month head-start on receiving a recreational license. The business license application process should begin by October of 2021.  

Projected first-year sales: $217.2 million (according to a University of Montana study)

Adult-Use or Medical: Adult-Use (recreational), Initiative 190

South Dakota

South Dakota is the first state in the country to legalize both medical and adult-use marijuana at the same time. As such, the state has successfully “leapfrogged” this traditionally multiple-step process. Despite having a Republican governor who did not support legalization, and harsh penalties for possession, both initiatives were passed with an overwhelming majority. Regulators plan on issuing enough licenses to reduce black-market cannabis sales while limiting licenses so as to not concentrate marijuana sales in a particular municipality.

Projected first-year sales: $1.5-$2 million (for medical market only)

Adult-Use or Medical: Both – Amendment A, recreational marijuana; Measure 26, medical marijuana


Medicinal marijuana was approved by an overwhelming majority in Missisippi. Citizens had to choose between two proposals: a more robust citizens’ proposal that includes 22 medical conditions, or a more limited lawmakers’ proposal that limits medical use to terminal patients. Voters decided upon the more inclusive proposal so that patients could legally obtain cannabis with a doctor’s recommendation. Licenses for businesses will be issued no later than August 15th, 2021 and regulators would be prevented from limiting the number of licenses.

Projected first-year sales: $240-$265 million

Adult-Use or Medical: Medical (Initiative 65)

New Jersey

Constituents in New Jersey passed adult-use marijuana measures. Despite worries that mail-in ballots would be difficult to navigate, enough voters flipped their ballot over and voted in support of recreational legalization. The number and types of business licenses available would depend on lawmakers and regulatory agencies. Senator Scutari from New Jersey is aiming to get recreational businesses open in record time. So far, New Jersey has only issued 12 licenses to companies for medicinal use, but legislators hope to expedite the process and open recreational sales as soon as possible.

Projected first-year sales: $375-$400 million

Adult-Use or Medical: Adult-Use (recreational)

How Canna Business Services Can Get You Started

It’s an exciting time to be in the cannabis industry because cannabis ballot initiatives have passed! Canna Business Services is a cannabis consulting company that offers unparalleled market expertise and regulatory compliance. We have had successful experience in highly competitive states. We’re a powerhouse team of experts ready to guide you through every step of the process, avoiding pitfalls while providing education.