PIERRE, S.D. — Medical marijuana appears to be well on its way to becoming legal in South Dakota, with 69% of voters approving Initiated Measure 26, as of 11:20 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 3, among 304,889 votes.

Amendment A, which legalizes recreational marijuana, is still an open question, with 53% to 47% support among 303,826 votes.

Neither vote tallies include all results returned via mail.

The medical marijuana ballot measure would establish a marijuana program for patients diagnosed with serious health conditions upon the recommendation of their physician.

Newsletter signup for email alerts

The Department of Health would oversee a system of dispensaries and conduct laboratory testing on the marijuana to ensure product safety.

IM 26 would require South Dakota patients to obtain a registration card from the Department of Health, which allows them to possess up to three ounces of marijuana and additional amounts of marijuana products.

“Additionally, if a resident cardholder is allowed to grow marijuana plants the cardholder may possess a minimum of 3 plants, as well as marijuana and products made from those plants,” the South Dakota Attorney General’s explanation of IM 26 states.

Voters were divided on Amendment A, which would legalize the recreational use of marijuana for individuals 21 years old and older. Individuals would be allowed to possess or distribute up to one ounce of marijuana.

The amendment would require the South Dakota State Legislature to pass laws providing for a program for medical marijuana and the sale of hemp by April 1, 2022.

A petition to put medical marijuana to a vote in South Dakota failed to get enough signatures to be placed on the 2016 ballot in South Dakota. Medical marijuana was on the 2010 ballot, but was rejected 63% of voters.

Proponents argue that by legalizing marijuana for people who are 21 or over would bring in substantial revenue into the state while decreasing costs related to those who would be arrested on marijuana related charges. Possession of less than one ounce of marijuana is a misdemeanor in South Dakota.

The amendment would require the South Dakota State Legislature to pass laws providing for a program for medical marijuana and the sale of hemp by April 1, 2022.