Recent actions on marijuana legislation.
Sen. Karen Tallian introduced Senate Bill 284 in the Indiana House on January 8. After the first reading, it was referred to Health and Provider Services Committee. The bill would permit the use of marijuana to treat medical conditions in Indiana. It creates a new Department of Marijuana Enforcement (DOME) with an oversight committee.
Patients and caregivers would be allowed to possess up to eight ounces of dried marijuana and cultivate up to 12 plants. They would need to apply for a two-year registration and pay a fee up to $100. Qualifying conditions include HIV/AIDS, anorexia, arthritis, cachexia, cancer, glaucoma, migraine, persistent muscle spasms, seizures, severe nausea and post traumatic stress disorder.
Sen. Perry Clark introduced Senate Bill 79 in the Kentucky Senate on January 9. The Kentucky Cannabis Freedom Act would decriminalize simple marijuana possession up to two ounces. Instead of the current criminal misdemeanor punished by up to 45 days in jail and a $250 fine, violators would be issued a civil citation for no more than $75.
The bill would also change the marijuana cultivation penalties from a Class A misdemeanor to Class B for six plants or less.
Del. Kenneth Plum introduced House Bill 1605 on January 8. It was referred to the Committee on Courts of Justice. The bill would allow patients with recommendations from their doctor and a condition that can be helped to use marijuana for medical purposes.
Virginia already has medical marijuana laws, but with requirements that make them mostly inoperable. The only conditions approved are cancer and glaucoma and patients are required to obtain a prescription for medical marijuana, but doctors cannot write prescriptions for the drug; only recommendations.