Medical Marijuana Bill On Its Way To Carcieri

Medical Marijuana Bill On Its Way To Carcieri
Posted by CN Staff on May 24, 2007 at 06:09:44 PT
By Jim Baron, Times Staff Writer
Source: Pawtucket Times
Providence, RI -- One of the two bills that would make permanent the state law allowing the medical use of marijuana has now passed both chambers of the General Assembly, and by margins large enough to overcome a threatened veto by Gov. Donald Carcieri. Virtually without discussion, the House of Representatives Wednesday voted 51-12 to pass the Senate version of the bill to remove the "sunset clause" that would cause the medical marijuana law passed last year to expire on June 30. The same bill passed the Senate on May 3, 28-5.
The next stop for the bill is the desk of Gov. Donald Carcieri for his signature or veto, but it will likely wait for the Senate to pass the House version of the bill, so the two can go to the governor together. The Senate is expected to vote on that bill next week. Time is starting to be a factor, said Rep. Thomas Slater, prime sponsor and part namesake of the House bill, which is called the Edward O. Hawkins and Thomas C. Slater Medical Marijuana Act, because if the sunset clause is not repealed by June 30, the law would expire and proponents might have to wait until next year to write a whole new bill. "If it is not passed by June 30, we have to start from scratch next session," Slater told The Times. "It's been a long haul over a number of years, and I don't particularly want to start from scratch." In that case, he had better prepare for a veto override vote. Shortly after the House voted to pass the Senate bill Wednesday, Carcieri spokesman Jeff Neal issued a statement saying: "I expect that Governor Carcieri will veto the latest medical marijuana bill. Unfortunately, the bill does not address the concerns raised by the Governor last year. "Specifically, the use of marijuana is still illegal under federal law. Additionally, the bill provides no legal method for obtaining marijuana. As a result, the bill could potentially subject Rhode Islanders to federal prosecution while also promoting the illicit drug trade." Carcieri vetoed the original bill last year, only to be ultimately overridden by the legislature. A gubernatorial veto can be overridden by three-fifths of lawmakers present and voting in each chamber. For a veto to be upheld in the House with all 75 members present, Carcieri would have to muster 31 votes in a chamber where there are only 13 fellow Republicans. In the Senate, where there are only 5 Republicans, Carcieri would need 16 votes to make a veto stick. Source: Pawtucket Times (RI)Author: Jim Baron, Times Staff WriterPublished: May 24, 2007Copyright: 2007 The Pawtucket TimesContact: editor pawtuckettimes.comWebsite: Articles:Medical Marijuana Bill Passed Pols Like Medical Marijuana
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Comment #3 posted by FoM on May 30, 2007 at 16:39:31 PT
Press Release from MPP
Permanent Medical Marijuana Law Goes to Governor***With Veto Expected, Patients Appeal for OverrideMay 30, 2007PROVIDENCE, RHODE ISLAND  The final push to make the Edward O. Hawkins and Thomas C. Slater Medical Marijuana Act permanent is getting underway as legislators concluded formal approval of the bill today. The measure now moves to desk of Gov. Donald Carcieri (R).URL:
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Comment #2 posted by afterburner on May 26, 2007 at 23:21:13 PT
Related Article
Medical Marijuana: Rhode Island Bill Awaits Expected Veto, Override
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Comment #1 posted by afterburner on May 26, 2007 at 23:09:41 PT
Good Work, Rhode Island
Canada struggles for a sane cannabis policy:CN BC: PUB LTE: Prohibition Doesn't Work, The Province, (25 May 2007)
 CN BC: Pot Challenge Gets High-Profile Help, Victoria Times-Colonist, (24 May 2007)
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