Committee passes key regulatory bills
Last update: September 28, 2015
Several important bills to expand patients’ access to medical cannabis preparations passed the House Judiciary Committee and may soon get a vote on the House floor. Rep. Mike Callton’s HB 4209 would establish important protections for Michigan’s medical marijuana businesses and patients by setting up a regulated and licensed dispensary system. Meanwhile, Rep. Lisa Lyons’ HB 4210 would clearly allow extractions and the products made from them, such as edibles. A third related bill, Rep. Klint Kesto’s HB 4827, would require an electronic “seed to sale” tracking system for cannabis plants and cannabis products.
Unfortunately, the estimated price tag is huge, and a recent amendment included an ill-considered 8% tax on the sale of medical cannabis to patients (on top of the existing sales tax). The state’s most vulnerable citizens should not be left to pay for a system that is estimated to exceed the cost of a similar regulatory system in California, which serves over six times the number of patients as Michigan. Please take a moment to contact your representative and ask for an amendment to make the program more affordable for those who rely on it.
A regulatory system is overdue, but costs must be reasonable if the program is to succeed.
Cannabis decriminalization and legalization, one city at a time
Last year marked the addition of eight more cities to the ranks of those that have adopted decrim measures, brining the total number to 18. Michiganians are sending the message loud and clear to state legislators — it’s time to improve state law and eliminate criminal penalties for personal possession! Another such measure will be before voters this November in Portage. For a complete list of cities that have either lowered or removed criminal penalties for marijuana possession in Michigan, click here.
Two groups have expressed interest in placing statewide legalization measures on the November 2016 ballot and have begun gathering the signatures necessary to get the initiatives included in the election. Read more about the various efforts here.
The Michigan Medical Marihuana Program
Application forms, along with the full text of the law and accompanying regulations, can be found at the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs website.
Under the MMMA, patients can choose to either cultivate their own medical marijuana in an enclosed, locked facility or to designate a caregiver to do so for them. Caregivers can assist no more than five patients. Also, note that in late 2012, the legislature passed several bills that changed the way the program works. Here’s a helpful summary of those new laws.