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Legislation

Legislative Update February 13, 2017

The Joint Select Committee on Marijuana Legalization Implementation has been established. In addition to considering marijuana-related bills, the committee has been given the authority to submit its own legislation. It appears that most of the proposed bills which pertain to marijuana will be referred to this committee.

At this time only a few of the proposed bills mention medical marijuana:
LD 231, SP 77 An Act To Allow Municipalities To Regulate the Growing of Marijuana
Presented by Senator Davis of Piscataquis. Cosponsored by Representative Nadeau of Winslow and
Senators Cyrway of Kennebec, Dill of Penobscot, Representative Handy of Lewiston.

This bill allows a municipality to restrict the cultivation of marijuana for recreational or medical use to certain areas in the municipality or to prohibit cultivation entirely within the municipality. This bill allows a municipality to restrict the cultivation of marijuana for recreational or medical use to certain areas in the municipality or to prohibit cultivation entirely within the municipality. The bill applies to cultivation of marijuana under the Marijuana Legalization Act and the Maine Medical Use of Marijuana Act. Referred to Committee on Marijuana Legalization Implementation on Jan 31, 2017.

LD 389, SPO 130 An Act To Promote Access to Financial Institutions by Entities That Are Authorized under State Law
Presented by Senator Hamper of Oxford.
This bill allows state-chartered credit unions to procure private insurance in lieu of share insurance from the National Credit Union Administration to facilitate the provision of financial services to registered dispensaries or registered caregivers authorized under the Maine Medical Use of Marijuana Act, to entities licensed under the Marijuana Legalization Act and to their employees.
Reference Committee Insurance and Financial Services
Last House Action 2/2/2017 - The Bill was REFERRED to the Committee on INSURANCE AND FINANCIAL SERVICES. In concurrence. ORDERED SENT FORTHWITH.
Last Senate Action 2/2/2017 - Committee on INSURANCE AND FINANCIAL SERVICES suggested and ordered printed REFERENCE to the Committee on INSURANCE AND FINANCIAL SERVICES
Ordered sent down forthwith for concurrence

LD 411, SPO138 An Act To Add Addiction to or Dependency on Opiates or Prescription Drugs to the List of Qualifying Conditions for Medical Marijuana
Sponsored By: Senator BRAKEY of Androscoggin
Cosponsored By: Senator BELLOWS of Kennebec, Senator CHIPMAN of Cumberland,
Senator DION of Cumberland, Representative HAMANN of South Portland,
Representative HICKMAN of Winthrop, Senator KATZ of Kennebec, Senator MIRAMANT of Knox,
Senator SAVIELLO of Franklin

The Maine Legislature provides a bill tracking & text search tool for all proposed legislation. Choose session 128th and type “marijuana” in the text search. The full content, sponsors and status information can be viewed http://legislature.maine.gov/bills/default_ps.asp?snum=128&PID=0

Legislative Update Jan 30, 2017

The Governor has signed LD 88, HP 66,128th Legislature

An Act To Delay the Implementation of Certain Portions of the Marijuana Legalization Act

Maine Gov. Paul LePage used an executive order to move oversight of licensing and enforcement relating to legal marijuana to the Bureau of Alcoholic Beverages and Lottery Operations. The governor says the alcoholic beverages bureau has expertise in managing retail sales, licensing and enforcement, and thus should have oversight.

In short and within set limitations, possessing and growing marijuana for recreational purposes is now legal, while buying or selling it is not legal yet. The state has until next year to develop rules for regulating new retail stores. Medical marijuana policy hasn’t changed.

The Joint Select Committee on Marijuana Legalization Implementation has been established. In addition to considering marijuana-related bills, the committee has been given the authority to submit its own legislation.

Republican Senate President Mike Thibodeau of Winterport said the committee has a busy session ahead of it. “There is an enormous amount of work ahead for this committee because of the myriad issues surrounding legalization that concern public safety, retail sales of the drug and state government oversight, to name a few,”

The members of the Joint Select Committee on Marijuana Legalization Implementation:

Sen. Roger Katz, R-Augusta, co-chairman

Sen. Kimberley Rosen, R-Bucksport

Sen. Joyce Maker, R-Calais

Sen. Mark Dion, D-Portland

Sen. Susan Deschambault, D-Biddeford

Rep. Teresa Pierce, D-Falmouth, co-chair

Rep. Kimberly Monaghan, D-Cape Elizabeth

Rep. Scott Hamann, D-South Portland

Rep. Craig Hickman, D-Winthrop

Rep. Erik Jorgensen, D-Portland

Rep. Lydia Blume, D-York

Rep. Donald Marean, R-Hollis

Rep. Bruce Bickford, R-Auburn

Rep. Lance Harvell, R-Farmington

Rep. Patrick Corey, R-Windham

Rep. Michael Perkins, R-Oakland

Rep. Kent Ackley, I-Monmouth

And on the national level, Congress must decide before April 28 whether to reapprove the Rohrabacher-Farr Amendment and if it does not, the Department of Justice would be able to use federal funds to prosecute individuals in the state-legal medical marijuana industry.

***LD 88, HP 66, 128th Legislature Public Hearing is being heard Today!!!!

An Act To Delay the Implementation of Certain Portions of the Marijuana Legalization Act

This is your chance to give testimony...if you cannot make it today, please do a written testimony and Email to your Representative, send to : This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
*Please stress the importance of preserving the Medical Program during implementation of Adult Use

Legislative Update January 18, 2017

The work of the 128th session of the Maine Legislature has begun. There may be as many as 70 marijuana bills working their way through the system but this number is not unusually large. There were 83 bills sponsored in the 127th Legislative Session.
The titles of the sponsored bills for this session have been released but not the content. These titles provide clues and topics include: Edibles, OUI, Testing, Repeal, Regulate.
Leading the others on information release and scheduling are two sponsored bills.

LD 88, HP 66,128th Legislature An Act To Delay the Implementation of Certain Portions of the Marijuana Legalization Act

HP 96,128th Legislature Joint Order, Establishing the Joint Select Committee on Marijuana Legalization Implementation

The Maine Legislature provides a bill tracking & text search tool for all proposed legislation. Choose session 128th and type “marijuana” in the text search. The full content, sponsors and status information can be viewed http://legislature.maine.gov/bills/default_ps.asp?snum=128&PID=0

MMCM has submitted a comprehensive bill to expand the medical marijuana program and to regulate that expansion. An Act to Amend Maine’s Medical Marijuana Law. The bill is sponsored by Rep. Deb Sanderson and Senator Eric Brakey. The bill is at the Revisor’s Office awaiting production into final form. The Revisor's Office is the Legislature's central production office where all legislative instruments, including bills and amendments, are initially filed and then produced in final form for introduction. The final form of the bill will be available when it has completed the Revisor’s process.

Update on status of Legalization……

The Govenor has signed off on the legalization bill. It will take effect in 30 days.However the State has nine months to develop the program rules. There is no retail sales at this time. Caregivers and Dispensaries still must only sell to current card holding patients. After 30 days any Maine resident over the age of 21 will be able to posses or grow their own 6 flowering plants.

We at MMCM are still working on bills that will grant patients greater and safer access to Medical Cannabis. Tomorrow at the Hall of Flags, we will have a table and our legislative committee will be there to help educate our Representatives and Senators on why we need to protect and preserve the Medical program.

Catherine Lewis

Bullet Points of 2017 Medical Marijuana Bill Put Forth by MMCM

Sponsored by Deb Sanderson and Eric Brakey
This bill:

1. Removes language of a “registered patient”. The removal of the term “registered patient is not intended to prevent voluntary registration by those who are not required to register.
2. Removes the definition for incidental amount of marijuana.
3. Adds definition for cannabis plant, clone, excess marijuana, harvested marijuana, immature plant, non-flowering, onsite assessment and seedling.
4. Amends definitions for inventory supply interruption to include provisions for a primary caregiver; enclosed locked, facility to clarify outdoor cultivation is permitted; members of the same household; and prepared marijuana.
5. Amends the qualifying condition of intractable pain to include pain that a medical provider determines is not managed effectively by prescription narcotics.
6. Allows a medical provider the discretion to issue a written certification for any medical condition that the physician believes may be alleviated by the patient using marijuana for medical use;
7. Removes the limit of dispensing no more than 2 ½ ounces of marijuana in a 15- day period to a qualifying patient who is a Maine resident. A visiting qualifying patient continues to be limited to no more than 2 ½ ounces of prepared marijuana during a 15 day period.
8. Allows a qualifying patient who is cultivating to furnish seeds and plants to another qualifying patient.
9. Permits a patient who is a minor, homebound or who requires assistance with the acquisition, preparation or administration of marijuana for medical use to designate more than one non-cultivating primary caregiver who may assist the patient.
10. Provides for an informal hearing process for a person aggrieved by the department’s enforcement action.
11. Prohibits a visiting qualifying patient from cultivating.
12. Permits primary caregiver designated to cultivate to furnish seeds and plants to an authorized person.
13. Increases the number of employees that a registered cultivating primary caregiver may employ. A primary caregiver designated to cultivate can employ one person per registry identification card.
14. Allows for authorized transfers of marijuana by a cultivating caregiver to for reasonable compensation.
15. Permits an authorized primary caregiver to dispose of excess marijuana by furnishing the marijuana to a designated primary caregiver in addition to a dispensary.
16. Requires a primary caregiver who is assisting more than two patients who are members of the primary caregiver’s household or family to register.

17. Increases the patient’s access to preferred primary caregivers by authorizes a cultivating primary caregiver to cultivate up to 6 mature per registry identification card, replacing the limit of 6 plants per patient for up to 5 patients with a limit of 6 plants per card for up to 5 registry identification cards. The maximum number of plants allowed for cultivation is unchanged.
18. Removes the limit of 2 ½ ounces plus 8 lbs of incidental marijuana and establishes the allowable amount of any form of harvested marijuana to be up to 8 pounds that may be possessed by an authorized person on behalf of a patient.
19. Establishes the allowable amount of marijuana to be up to 8 pounds per registry identification card for a registered designated primary caregiver, no more than 8 pounds per patient up to two patients for a primary caregiver not required to register, and 8 pounds per patient for a dispensary designated by a patient.
20. Establishes tracking and reporting requires for registered primary careigvers and dispensaries.
21. Permits the department to inspect all cultivation sites to assess compliance with this chapter.
22. Amends the requirement for a second physician to consult on a written certification for a minor qualifying patient to allow for the physician to provide a written certification if the consulting physician fails to respond within 3 business days or in the absence of a list maintained by the department.
23. Provides for the department to use its discretion in utilizing the program’s fund to reimburse families for the cost of the required consultation by a second physician.
24. Requires rulemaking to implement process to sanction a person in violation of the Act.
25. Extends immunity existing for dispensary employees, principal officers and board members to registered primary caregivers and primary caregiver employees.
26. Authorizes the department or remove marijuana determined to be in excess of allowable limits.
27. Requires consultation with a minimum of three medical professionals, prior to accepting or deny a petition to add a debilitating condition, one of whom may be selected by the petitioner.
28. Requires major substantive rulemaking for onsite inspections by the department to asses compliance.
29. Permits the department to establish a period of ineligibility for persons who have had authorizations denied or revoked.
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30. Requires the cardholder to notify the department when the information on the card issued by the department is inaccurate.
31. Establishes new fees for applications.
32. Adds a sanction for a person found to be in possession of a registry identification card issued to another person.