North Dakota Measure 3
is Seriously Flawed

This measure was written to change the current law in North Dakota on recreational marijuana.

Make no mistake, if this passes the law governing the growing, selling, and using of recreational marijuana will be the most liberal of any state in America.

Read on to find out the facts.

Vote No On Measure 2 ND


The language of the measure states (if the measure passes) that by creating the new Century Code chapter 66-01, it would “nullify and repeal any North Dakota Code language which conflicts with Chapter 66-01”.

That means EVERYTHING that addresses marijuana under current law – in any way – would be repealed.

The only things specifically noted in the measure that would be illegal are the sale of marijuana to anyone under 21; the distribution of marijuana to anyone under 21, and for anyone under the age of 21 to possess marijuana.

But that’s ALL that is the specifically addressed in the measure. Nothing else is written. So NOTHING else would be illegal if this measure passes.

Legality Issues

Will the Legislature “fix it?”

Proponents say, in essence, “the Legislature will work things out later.” WILL THEY? Do we KNOW that for sure?
Some say, that after the medical marijuana law overall, there may not be enough support in the House and Senate to get a 2/3 majority vote necessary to make the changes. Are we willing to take the chance?

What would be illegal?

The only things specifically noted in the measure that would be illegal are the sale of marijuana to anyone under 21; the distribution of marijuana to anyone under 21, and for anyone under the age of 21 to possess marijuana. But that’s ALL that is the specifically addressed in the measure. Nothing else is written. So NOTHING else would be illegal if this measure passes.

Re-Write the Measure?

Can the measure be re-written now? ABSOLUTELY NOT.
This IS what North Dakotans will be voting on.

Effective date?

If the measure passes, it would become law in North Dakota 30 days after passage – which would be December 6th.

Possession Issues


According to the lack of anything specific in the measure language, anyone could grow any amount of marijuana anywhere. Let that sink in!

Zoning laws would not apply. Marijuana could be grown, processed and sold in any quantity anywhere in the state. Near schools, churches, playgrounds, hospitals and neighborhoods, anywhere – outside or inside. Ponder the ramifications of the possibilities of free-for-all marijuana growing.


According to the measure language, anyone could sell any amount of marijuana to anyone in the state 21 years of age or older.

In essence, the lack of language in the measure describing regulation on sales means anyone in your community could be a recreational marijuana peddler. No regulation. No rules. And there is NO LIMIT on the quantity they could sell to another person. Think about the problems this could cause. It boggles the mind.


According to the measure language, there is no limit on the amount of recreational marijuana a person can possess.

Think about what possibilities that could cause!

An example: one person buys a large amount from a seller, then becomes a seller himself. The snowball would just get larger! This isn’t what North Dakotans want!

Public Use Issues


Driving while impaired would no longer be illegal.

Protecting our Kids

Current neglect and endangerment laws – those prohibiting smoking marijuana in the presence of a child – would be repealed.

Smoking in Public

Laws and ordinances prohibiting smoking marijuana in a public place are repealed – therefore marijuana could be smoked anywhere.

Conflict with Medical Marijuana Law

The medical marijuana law has conflicting provisions, therefore there is a potential that it is repealed under the measure.

Financial Effects

Expungement of Legal Records

People who have prior marijuana-related records would have those records expunged. The ambiguity of the measure language could lead to significant future legal issues. “Records” are not defined in the measure language. Failure to expunge records provides an individual with the right to a jury trial.
The state would be financially responsible for records expungement, including costs and attorney fees – all within 30 days from the law going into effect. That means by January 6th every record would need to be expunged. According to the N.D. Attorney General this task would be monumental, very expensive for taxpayers, if even possible in that short time frame. This would require hiring many, many temporary employees (all of whom would first need to be vetted) and the cost would be huge.

Tax dollars – your tax dollars – would pay those bills.

Big Money. Big Profits.

Make no mistake; recreational marijuana sales is all about big money and big profits. There is little, if any, regard for consequences to society and our citizens. Large, sophisticated, experienced recreational marijuana sales organizations would likely swoop into North Dakota and set up sales operations, sucking money out of the state. And the promise of a significant number of new jobs is only marketing hype.

Already, private holding groups and financiers have raised millions of start-up dollars to promote businesses that will sell marijuana and marijuana-related merchandise. The former head of Strategy for Microsoft has said that he wants to “mint more millionaires than Microsoft” with marijuana and that he wants to create the “Starbucks of marijuana.” (3)


Taxation of recreational marijuana is NOT ADDRESSED in the measure language. Many believe sales of recreational marijuana could be a huge new source of tax revenue for the state. Based on the measure language, there is nothing mentioned. Therefore, the only possible tax on sales would be normal sales tax, there is doubt that even this would apply, based on the last sentence in the measure language. So surprise – NO BIG TAX REVENUE STREAMS!

Black Market Growth

In states where recreational marijuana is legal to sell, the black market is growing significantly. WHY? Since storefront operations would be focused on selling highly profitable inventory, prices will reflect their goals of making BIG MONEY. This gives the black market sellers the opportunity to undercut the “legal” sellers.

Some would have you think that with recreational marijuana sales becoming legal, prices would be reasonable – because of the theory that “competition breeds low prices.” In other states, given the high-profit business models of most sellers, prices are high.

A perfect example of what happens to the black market is in nearby Colorado, where recreational marijuana sales is legal. Law enforcement report a 50% increase in illegal growing operations in rural areas…which in turn results in sales by anyone, anywhere…even on the street corner across from the school. (1)

Of course, if Measure 3 were to pass, ANYONE could be a grower or dealer. And ANYONE over 21 could purchase any amount they wished.

Criminal Effects

Law Enforcement

Our law enforcement agencies would have an entirely new challenge in trying to protect North Dakota citizens and kids.


Here's a fact for your consideration: In Colorado, crime has increased 11 times the national average since legalized recreational marijuana sales have begun. Part of that statistic shows violent crime has increased 19%. (1)

Societal Effects

Driving and the Consequences of Marijuana Use

In Washington state, where recreational marijuana sales is legal, drugged-driving fatalities have DOUBLED. (1) In Colorado, their Department of Transportation reports marijuana-impaired driving fatalities have more than doubled. Across the country 50% of fatal car crashes involve drivers whose blood tests showed positive for THC – the active ingredient in marijuana.

Workplace Problems

Marijuana would be pervasive throughout North Dakota, including in the workforce. Given the effects marijuana can have on a person, businesses will likely suffer tardiness, employee shortages, lack of attention causing decreased efficiency, and don’t forget the potential for significant increases in workplace accidents. Other states are reporting these problems. North Dakota would not be immune.

In Colorado, a study has shown more positive marijuana drug tests and overall marijuana prevalence. (2) As of 2018, positive marijuana test results are up 48% in Nevada, 14% in Massachusetts and 11% in California. (5) And if your business requires applicants pass a drug test, it will likely be even more difficult to hire qualified employees.

Health Harms and Addiction

Medical emergency room visits for marijuana-related issues will likely sky-rocket as they have in the other states currently selling recreational marijuana. Who will pay those bills? Example: in central Oregon since recreational marijuana was made legal, marijuana-related emergency room visits have increased 2000%. (1)

Is marijuana addictive? According to studies, 1 in 10 people who try marijuana becomes addicted to it, developing a dependence that produces withdrawal and cravings. If marijuana use starts in adolescence, the chances of addiction are 1 in 6. (1)

Health risks: according to a 2009 study, marijuana use directly affects the brain; specifically the parts responsible for memory, learning, attention and reaction time. (1)

Long-term mental effects: several studies have found that marijuana use has been shown significantly linking with mental illness, especially schizophrenia and psychosis, and also depression and anxiety. (1)

Recreational Marijuana and Our Kids

It’s certainly on all of our minds. With what would be the most liberal, free-for-all law in the country, recreational marijuana would most likely reach North Dakota children quickly. In Colorado, studies show first-time use has skyrocketed 65% since legalization.(1) and marijuana use by kids 12 and older in their state is 85% higher than the national average (6). Are we ready for that?

Strength of Today’s Marijuana

Some who grew up in the 60s and 70s remember the marijuana of those times. The marijuana smoked by baby boomers reportedly contained about 1-3% THC (the active ingredient in marijuana). By 2014 the THC levels had reportedly increased to 14% (4). There are studies that show levels have grown since 2014 dramatically too. No two ways about it, marijuana is a mind-altering drug and the potency of today’s product is significant.

Alcohol Consumption

Alcohol consumption has NOT decreased in any state where recreational marijuana is sold. In some states it has increased. (1)

Sources of Information

(1) Smart Approaches to Marijuana. Learnaboutsam.org

(2) Colorado Office of the State Auditor. (2013). & City of Denver Office of the Auditor. (2013).

(3) Ex-Microsoft exec plans ‘Starbucks’ of marijuana. (2013, May 31). United Press International. Retrieved from http://www.upi.com/Top_News/US/2013/05/31/VIDEO-Ex-Microsoft-exec-plans-Starbucks-of-marijuana/UPI41161369985400/

(4) Mehmedic, Z., et al. (2010). Potency Trends of D9-THC and Other Cannabinoids in Confiscated Cannabis Preparations from 1993 to 2008. The Journal of Forensic Sciences, 55(5).

(5)  Retrieved from http://newsroom.questdiagnostics.com/ Published on July 2, 2018

(6)Rocky Mountain High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area , Volume 5 published September, 2018