Medical Marijuana Bill Advances
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Medical Marijuana Bill Advances
Posted by CN Staff on April 06, 2011 at 08:26:05 PT
By William Weir, The Hartford Courant
Source: Hartford Courant
Connecticut -- After shooting down a proposal for the state to grow medical marijuana and dispense it through pharmacies, the General Assembly's judiciary committee passed a bill Tuesday that would allow patients with certain conditions to grow their own marijuana.The bill, which would allow patients suffering from a debilitating disease to grow marijuana for medicinal use, passed 34-10. It now goes to the Senate floor, although a review of the bill could refer it to a different committee.
If the measure passes, the state could not prosecute people for possession of marijuana if they have a signed certification from their physician. To receive the certification, a person must have a debilitating medical condition such as cancer, glaucoma, AIDS, Parkinson's disease or multiple sclerosis.The bill would allow people with certification to grow up to four plants in their home.This legislation is the same bill that then-Gov. M. Jodi Rell vetoed in 2007, but it now has the support of Gov. Dannel P. Malloy. The two main arguments against the bill were that medical substitutes for marijuana are available and have gone through the Food and Drug Administration's approval process, and that it conflicts with federal law.John W. Hetherington, R-New Canaan, opposed the bill, saying that it invites "people to undertake a great risk legally." He added that although he's in favor of anything that will help people who are suffering, going against federal law isn't the way to do it."What kind of message are we sending to the young people?" Hetherington said. "What kind of message are we sending? 'We don't like the federal law, so we're simply going to disregard it.' "The committee's co-chairman, Sen. Eric D. Coleman, D-Bloomfield, said that the president has signed an executive order that the federal government would not interfere with state laws regarding medical marijuana.Before the discussion of the bill itself, committee members discussed an amendment proposed by Sen. John A. Kissell, R-Enfield. Instead of allowing patients to grow their own marijuana, the amendment called for the state to grow it and have pharmacies dispense it. Kissell suggested that it could be grown at the University of Connecticut, under proper security. Kissell noted that the University of Mississippi has received federal permission to grow marijuana for research purposes, and suggested that UConn might get a similar federal go-ahead."If marijuana is going to be used for medicinal purposes, then we should treat it like any other drug and dispense it through pharmacies," Kissell said. "If we're going to move forward with this, it does need to have some kind of dispensary that would work."In other states where patients are allowed to grow their own marijuana, Kissell said, criminals have targeted those homes. Having medical marijuana dispensed at pharmacies would eliminate that risk, he said.Other committee members said that the amendment was flawed. Some questioned whether pharmacies actually could dispense marijuana legally, and others objected to the idea of growing marijuana at UConn. Rep. Mary G. Fritz, D-Wallingford, said that cultivation of marijuana could jeopardize the university's federal grants, especially those for its agricultural program.The amendment failed, 27-10, but committee members said that parts of the amendment might be worked into the bill as it proceeds through the legislative process. Source: Hartford Courant (CT)Author: William Weir, The Hartford Courant Published: April 5, 2011Copyright: 2011 The Hartford CourantContact: letters courant.comWebsite: Medical Marijuana Archives 
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Comment #3 posted by FoM on April 07, 2011 at 08:24:31 PT
I agree with you.
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Comment #2 posted by dongenero on April 07, 2011 at 07:56:09 PT
when they propose pharmacies....
When these legislators propose dispensing through pharmacies, it's just a prohibitionist attempt at a legislative trap.Pharmacies are regulated by the federal government and the DEA in order to dispense controlled substances. Cannabis is still listed by the feds as schedule 1 controlled substance, (despite the Feds cancer websites, medical patents and IND program with University of Mississippi). As such, the Feds would withdraw licensing at least, or prosecute-at worst, any pharmacy that tried to dispense cannabis.This is why physicians in MMJ states can only "recommend", not prescribe cannabis.
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Comment #1 posted by runruff on April 06, 2011 at 09:11:15 PT
"...dispense it through pharmacies,"
In the world of corporate espionage, this is the same as turning a compeating product over to an unethical competitor to distribute. Why would a pharmepseudo company dispense the real thing while they have so many pseudo-meds [pills] of their own to push?The "public servant" who suggested this ruse has shown his hand, big time. How could it become any more blatant than this. "As a last resort to banning mmj, let's get the legal right to dispense it," they schemed.I have always said, without any contradiction, "they will fight tooth and nail, down to the last dollar!" Currently they make about three billion dollars a day, collectively. This is large incentive to fight for every day they can keep mmj out of the race.We see the crime, we see the criminals. The best we here can do is stay the course as we have been. We are winning!
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