Court rules drug price issue can appear on 2017 ballot

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — An Ohio Supreme Court ruling could allow voters next year to decide a ballot initiative aimed at controlling what state agencies pay for prescription drugs.

Backers of the Drug Price Relief Act had asked the court to order the Ohio secretary of state to certify its ballot initiative instead of sending it back to the Legislature for consideration. The court voted 4-3 Friday in favor of the issue’s backers.

Last month, the court invalidated petitions after ruling that elections officials had erroneously counted some of the signatures. Supporters recently submitted additional signatures to close the gap and sought to bypass the Legislature.

The proposal aims to keep state agencies from buying drugs at prices higher than what the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs pays.

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