An initiative that would allow medical marijuana will very likely be on the November ballot in North Dakota. Just days before the filing deadline North Dakotans for Compassionate Care turned in just over 20,000 signatures to qualify their measure, almost twice the minimum required.

North Dakota’s election law requires an initiative to have only 13,452 valid signatures to qualify. The Secretary of State has up to 35 days to review the signatures. Unless the Secretary finds an unusually high level of signatures to be invalid, this medical marijuana initiative will likely be officially placed on the November ballot in a month.

If the initiative is approved, it would allow seriously ill patients to use marijuana medically with their doctor’s approval. It would also create a patient registration system that would provide patients with an ID signifying they are allowed to use medical marijuana.

If this North Dakota initiative qualifies, the state will join Massachusetts, which earlier this year had its own medical marijuana initiative officially placed on the November ballot. Currently there 17 states plus the District of Columbia that have approved laws legalizing medical marijuana. If the voters in both these states approve their respective initiatives it could be 19 states before the year is over.