Montana residents will have the opportunity to change the state constitution in this year's upcoming elections. Marsy’s Law recently gained enough signatures to be on the ballot. Montana Secretary of State Linda McCulloch announced its eligibility when it received enough signatures on Friday, May 6.

“CI-116 [Marsy’s Law] has qualified for the November general election ballot.” McCulloch said. “Well CI is a constitutional initiative so there’s twice as many signatures needed for that. A little more than 40,000 signatures in the state are needed and that includes 10 percent of the voters in each of the 48 legislative house districts.”

The change would allow victims of a crime access to more information on the status of their offenders,  allow victims to be present at court hearings and several other rights that they currently do not have. Marsy’s law is currently the only ballot issue to be approved but that could change over the next few weeks.

“Including Marsy’s law there’s ten [initiatives] out right now to gather signatures,” McCulloch said. “So there are nine more that are waiting to qualify. They have until June 17th to get all of their petition signatures into the county and then the county has about a month to get them all in our office.”

The other issues that could be placed on the ballot propose changes in the legalization of marijuana either for medical use or to those over 21. Two other state constitution initiatives hoping to get on the ballot are the ability for school employees to carry concealed hand guns on school grounds and the promotion of research into developing therapies and cures for brain disease and injuries.

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