Compromise reached on establishing medical marijuana program in Utah

Medical marijuana appears headed for Utah after a grand compromise was hammered out by parties involved in the contentious debate over MMJ.

A medical cannabis legalization initiative still will appear on the Nov. 6 ballot in Utah. But backers, lawmakers and opponents including Drug Safe Utah and the Mormon Church have agreed on a more restricted measure to be enacted by legislators after the election.

The compromise, which came after heated opposition that the initiative was too permissive, was dubbed a “shared vision” at a press conference Thursday.

Utah Governor Gary Herbert said at the press briefing he would call for a special legislative session in November to enact the compromise agreement, regardless of the vote on the ballot initiative.

The compromise measure, according to the Deseret News, Salt Lake Tribune and the Associated Press, would:

  • Initially limit the number of dispensaries, called pharmacies, to five statewide, with a licensed pharmacist at each.
  • Establish a single, state-owned central pharmacy that would supply health departments with MMJ products with certain dosage limits.
  • Permit MMJ to be consumed as a tablet, capsule, concentrated oil, liquid suspension, topical substance, a skin patch, a sublingual pill, a chewable or dissolvable cube, or unprocessed marijuana flower packaged in a blister pack in which each blister contains no more than 1 gram.
  • Ban home cultivation.

Marijuana resin or wax could be used in limited circumstances, according to the Deseret News.

Chronic pain, which is the most common ailment among MMJ patients, would remain a qualifying medical condition under the agreement.

But it’s not clear how MMJ cultivation would be set up.

Leaders of the Republican-dominated Legislature say the deal guards against the possibility of broad legalization. Medical marijuana advocates say they’re backing it to avoid continued fighting and uncertainty.

– Associated Press and Marijuana Business Daily

 

6 comments on “Compromise reached on establishing medical marijuana program in Utah
  1. Corey on

    Let’s hope the public gets to say yes or no on this and it is not just enacted as what the church lets us have. I am glad that we moved forward. I don’t like that this is what they think we want.

    Reply
  2. Ted Stevens on

    “Permit MMJ to be consumed as a tablet, capsule, concentrated oil, liquid suspension, topical substance, a skin patch, a sublingual pill, a chewable or dissolvable cube, or unprocessed marijuana flower packaged in a blister pack in which each blister contains no more than 1 gram.”

    “packaged in a blister pack in which each blister contains no more than 1 gram.”

    “no more than 1 gram.”

    What an unbelievable volume of plastic trash this GRAND COMPROMISE will generate!

    Reply
  3. Lawrence Goodwin on

    Re: that last sentence,”Medical marijuana advocates say they’re backing it to avoid continued fighting and uncertainty.” I can assure said “advocates” that they certainly will regret selling out to the Utah Republicans, who have ZERO right to dictate which medical cannabis products are “legal” and which are not—the federal and state “marihuana” laws are a colossal fraud. More and more state “medical marijuana” laws are no different. No medical cannabis market can thrive without the whole assortment of natural products, including dried seedless flowers, hash, drinks, edibles, extracts and topicals. That’s how it started with California’s in 1996, and many other medical cannabis markets have operated that way without any major problems. Utah politicians must abandon their zeal to control every little detail and let patients decide for themselves how to consume.

    In 2014, just four short years ago, the whole “no-smoking” thing started in my pathetic home state, New York, when Democrat Gov. Andrew Cuomo arrogantly imposed that restriction himself in cahoots with state officials in Minnesota. Please do not repeat our example, Utah. Heartless bureaucrats (following the letter of a non-compassionate state law) imposed a limit of 10 companies to serve a geographic area of 54,000 square miles, including heavily populated Long Island and one of the biggest cities in the world. Many New York patients still complain about the tragic results: no convenient access and products that are too expensive. It is actually painful to watch how slow New York’s business growth is under such circumstances.

    The bottom line is that it is long past time for elected leaders in all 50 states to stop being so leery of cannabis raw materials. Hold both Democrats and Republicans to account for their ignorance. The official fear of these plants never had any basis in science or objective truth. That means freedom for all cannabis markets—manufacturing, medicine, nutrition (food) and, yes, adult recreation—is clearly in our nation’s best interests.

    Reply
  4. Darwin Long on

    I see in this “compromise” the real reason that the state and the church were fighting the initiative. It was to setup a DABC for marijuana and be certain that the state could regualte the price and availability through that “central pharmacy”. They don’t want anyone other than themselves and their cronies to make any money from this.

    Reply

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