Group Seeking Drug Price Ballot Issue Needs More Signatures After Supreme Court Ruling

Aug 17, 2016

The Ohio Supreme Court says backers of a plan to cap the price Ohio pays for drugs it buys for Medicaid, prisons and other state-run programs fell short of the signatures they need to put it before voters next year.

The court rejected more than 10,000 signatures turned in by Ohioans for Fair Drug Prices, leaving the group more than 5,000 signatures short. Spokesman Ged Kenslea said the group has till August 25 to continue its campaign to take the proposal to lawmakers and eventually voters.  “We are going to try and meet the deadline set by the court. But we do hope to have the measure on the November 2017 ballot in Ohio,” Kenslea said.

Before voters would see it, lawmakers first would have to take no action on the proposal, which the group says would save the state 20% on its drug costs because it could not pay more for drugs than the federal Department of Veterans Affairs. The group anticipates heavy opposition from the pharmaceutical industry.