cannabisnews.com: Marijuana Group Offers Help 





Marijuana Group Offers Help 
Posted by CN Staff on January 19, 2005 at 07:58:23 PT
By Allison Farrell, Gazette State Bureau 
Source: Billings Gazette
Helena -- Low-income and ailing Montanans who are qualified to use medical marijuana are now eligible for financial help with the one-time $200 fee the state is charging patients to get on the medical marijuana registry. The Marijuana Policy Project of Washington, D.C., the main driver behind Montana's new medical marijuana law, has donated $2,000 to a financial assistance fund for low-income Montanans.
The project is also seeking private donations to the fund. The new law was passed by voters on Nov. 2 and took effect Jan. 1. "Our goal is to make sure that no Montana patient has to risk arrest and jail because they can't afford to register," said Neal Levine, director of state policies for the Medical Marijuana Project. "Hopefully, Montanans will be as generous with their donations as they were with their votes, keeping the program fully funded." Robin Prosser of Missoula, a supporter of the new law, was dismayed when she learned in December that the state would charge medical marijuana users a $200 registration fee. "This is pretty high cost just to get a card," Prosser said. "A driver's license doesn't cost that much. It's like charging people for handicapped stickers for their car." Prosser is the first Montanan to receive the aid offered by the Washington, D.C., group. "I am grateful to MPP for their help, and I hope no other sick person has to worry about whether they can afford a yearly cost like this," Prosser said in a written statement Tuesday. The new law, passed by a 63 to 37 percent margin on Nov. 2, calls for the creation of a state medical marijuana registry. Patients with certain medical conditions who receive a written recommendation for marijuana from their doctor are registered on the confidential list and issued a card that permits them to have as many as six marijuana plants and an ounce of marijuana. Roy Kemp, head of the state's licensure bureau, said the new law didn't come with any funding. He said the $200 fee is necessary to cover the cost of the new database and registration service. "We had to come up with a fee that would enable us to administer the program as the voters intended," Kemp said in a written statement. "We tried to keep the fee as low as possible without putting the program in jeopardy. Given the cost of most medical treatments, we think $200 is not unreasonable." Prosser, who uses marijuana to ease chronic bone pain, muscle spasms, nausea and headaches, was charged last May with drug possession and drug paraphernalia possession. Patients will be eligible for assistance if they appear to qualify for a medical marijuana ID card and their income is below 150 percent of the federal poverty level, or about $9,300 for a single person. Contributions to the fund can be made online at: http://www.mpp.org/patientsFull application instructions are available at: http://www.montanacares.org/assistance.htmlSource: Billings Gazette, The (MT)Author: Allison Farrell, Gazette State Bureau Published: January 19, 2005 Copyright: 2005 The Billings GazetteContact: speakup billingsgazette.comWebsite: http://www.billingsgazette.com/Related Articles & Web Site:Medical Marijuana Information Linkshttp://freedomtoexhale.com/medical.htmMissoula Authorities Work To Establish Protocolhttp://cannabisnews.com/news/thread20086.shtmlMarijuana Law Creates Tangle of Legal Issueshttp://cannabisnews.com/news/thread20077.shtmlMedical Marijuana Registry Fee Angers Patientshttp://cannabisnews.com/news/thread20059.shtml
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Comment #21 posted by FoM on January 25, 2005 at 08:14:53 PT
Related Article from Vermont
Fee Assistance Offered by Medical Marijuana GroupJanuary 25, 2005 By John Zicconi Vermont Press Bureau 
MONTPELIER  A marijuana advocacy group on Monday began offering financial assistance to low-income Vermonters who cannot afford to register for the state's new medical-marijuana program.The Vermont Marijuana Policy Project will pay the $100 registration fee for anyone within 150 percent of the federal poverty level who qualifies for the new state program.Vermont in November became the ninth state to decriminalize the possession and use of marijuana for chronically ill people suffering from certain diseases. In Vermont, people suffering from AIDS, cancer and multiple sclerosis can possess, grow and consume marijuana with permission from the Department of Public Safety.Nancy Lynch, Marijuana Policy Project spokeswoman, said some people who qualify for the state's program may be too poor to pay the registration fee because their disease prevents them from working."We have heard that there are people who could not afford the $100 so we started a fund," Lynch said. The policy project has set aside $2,000, she said.Low-income Vermonters must provide proof of their financial status, complete a state application and mail the information to VMPP, 58 East St., Montpelier, VT 05602.The Policy Project will write a check and file the application with the state for all who qualify for financial assistance, Lynch said. Single people that earn less than $14,000 per year qualify for assistance, as do families of four that earn less than $28,000.So far, one person has qualified for assistance, and the state will soon consider his application, Lynch said. State officials said five people have requested permission to medically use marijuana and all applications have been approved.Applications can be downloaded from the Department of Public Safety's Website at: http://www.dps.state.vt.usCopyright: 2004 Times Argushttp://www.timesargus.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20050125/NEWS/501250338/1003/NEWS02
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Comment #20 posted by FoM on January 19, 2005 at 11:39:51 PT
I Hope
That people can benefit from this too. 
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Comment #19 posted by Hope on January 19, 2005 at 11:34:17 PT
Even if it is a "publicity stunt"...
anybody can call it what they want to call it but it looks like a true helping hand to me, however small or large. If it has the consequential advantage of inadvertently supplying a bit of needed, in this day and age, if you are pursuing a cause, publicity...then so be it. It seems to me like it could be true help that could be a blessing to someone...and that seems only good. I hope people that need to, can take advantage of it, and I hope no one tries to take advantage of MPP's offer...by taking the money if they don't truly need it. Let it be used by the true penny scrapers...who do exist and are very real and this help could prove to be a huge blessing to someone and their family. Pass the word so that they can know.
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Comment #18 posted by Sam Adams on January 19, 2005 at 11:14:18 PT
MPP
Even if the $2000 is just a publicity stunt, it's OK. Maybe the purpose is also to set an example for other generous people with $$
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Comment #17 posted by Hope on January 19, 2005 at 10:28:23 PT
Wishes
May your days be blissful and filled with peace.
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Comment #16 posted by Hope on January 19, 2005 at 10:26:32 PT
Bliss
helps heal the wounds of the unbearable.I suspect.
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Comment #15 posted by Hope on January 19, 2005 at 10:25:07 PT
Boy!
Is this one little piece of thread that could be misread and misunderstood? I'd think so...if love and trust and faith in each other weren't involved.
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Comment #14 posted by Hope on January 19, 2005 at 10:23:20 PT
Ohhhh!
Blissful!How wonderful for you! Such a precious thing and so hard to come by!I'm happy for you.
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Comment #13 posted by Hope on January 19, 2005 at 10:22:10 PT
More ignorance
For my life's sake, for my health, I have to avoid, and therefore remain "ignorant" of some things. I scrupulously avoid horrible, grievous, and gruesome images. Perhaps, I'm wrong. Perhaps if I studied the images of suffering and pain and hideous wrong, like the beheadings...perhaps...perhaps it would blow my personal mind and leave me useless to myself or anyone else. I can't see any benefit in that. The first thing I realized the moment of discovering of the huge and hideous news of such a great loss of humanity on the earth recently, that if I rushed to them...like I wanted to...I would most likely be in the way. I've seen people do it and I don't want to...be in the way...I mean.One must remain rational and look for a place to contribute from that they feel is right for them.
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Comment #12 posted by FoM on January 19, 2005 at 10:21:58 PT
Hope
Ignorance is bliss was more about me. I was blissful.
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Comment #11 posted by FoM on January 19, 2005 at 10:17:33 PT
Hope
That wasn't directed at you at all. I can relate to Steves comment that's what I meant.
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Comment #10 posted by Hope on January 19, 2005 at 10:13:48 PT
Ignorance
Ignorant and loving it? Makes things simpler, apparently.
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Comment #9 posted by FoM on January 19, 2005 at 10:08:16 PT
herbdoc215 
Ignorance is bliss. I know what you mean.
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Comment #8 posted by Hope on January 19, 2005 at 10:04:29 PT
Robin!
I'm glad you're still alive! Wise choice!
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Comment #7 posted by Hope on January 19, 2005 at 09:58:17 PT
Sam, "What a little rat-boy!"
If that means the man's statements sound snivelling, I have to agree with you.Psycho wise, I'd think they would see some of that "passive-agressive" stuff going on with him.
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Comment #6 posted by medicinal toker on January 19, 2005 at 09:36:41 PT
$2000 worth of free publicity!
It gets MPPs name in the paper, and they raise additional funds from donors. Makes them look good with minimal effort and investment. If they are really serious, why not set this up in every state with a fee? I'm sure there are needy patients in the other mmj states too.
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Comment #5 posted by Hope on January 19, 2005 at 09:26:28 PT
"Poor"
Some people don't know what "poor" means. They don't understand about scraping every penny together to barely survive.
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Comment #4 posted by Hope on January 19, 2005 at 09:23:12 PT
The Marijuana Policy Project of Washington, D.C.
Kudos! Way to go, guys!
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Comment #3 posted by herbdoc215 on January 19, 2005 at 09:20:23 PT
After all the money MPP has spent....
all I can say is giving 2000 so those desperately poor and ill can get exemptions is "mighty white" of them! This is truely the least they could do and still get a headline. Sometimes I hate knowing what I do and wish I could just stick my head into the sand also. If they would try and word one of these initives to actually help people instead of furthering a political agenda, worded by polls and focus groups this wouldn't be needed.  Peace, Steve Tuck
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Comment #2 posted by afterburner on January 19, 2005 at 09:15:02 PT
Sock It to 'em, Sam
I hear your righteous anger and I agree. Your metaphors made me laugh out loud, not because the topic is not deadly serious, but because I love to see that pepper that I also feel toward recalcitrant politicians, bureaucrats, and LEO's.
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Comment #1 posted by sam adams on January 19, 2005 at 08:39:40 PT
Jerk
Roy Kemp, head of the state's licensure bureau, said the new law didn't come with any funding. He said the $200 fee is necessary to cover the cost of the new database and registration service."We had to come up with a fee that would enable us to administer the program as the voters intended," Kemp said in a written statement. "We tried to keep the fee as low as possible without putting the program in jeopardy. Given the cost of most medical treatments, we think $200 is not unreasonable."What a little rat-boy! He's not providing any "medical treatment"!! He's a government mafia thug, demanding his cut from sick people.  Extortion is the word I'm looking for. What a sad world we live in. If you're sick and need this medicine, you have to either pay street criminals to get it, or pay off government bureaucrats to get it. Hello, Byzantine empire! Perhaps those seeking medical marijunua should have to come in and bow down before the governor? Maybe you could just let Kemp add your daughter to his harem for a year to use cannabis? 
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