The Marijuana Policy Project has submitted our initial comments on the partial draft rules regulating medical marijuana manufacturers in Minnesota. The Department of Health is accepting public comments on these and other medical marijuana rules until further notice is published in the State Register. MPP will keep you appraised of timeline updates as we know more. If you are interested in commenting, please visit the Department’s site for instructions on how to do so.
Also, in case you missed it, Jeff Johnson won Tuesday’s GOP primary, defeating Scott Honour, Marty Seifert, and Kurt Zellers. Jeff Johnson, who has stated that he supports allowing medical marijuana, will be facing Gov. Mark Dayton (DFL) in November’s general election.
The Minnesota Department of Health has issued draft rules governing applications and oversight for two medical marijuana manufacturers. These rules are provisional, and may be revised before becoming final. Anyone interested in commenting on these proposed rules may do so by following the department’s instructions.
In addition to publishing draft manufacturer rules, the department will be hosting a public meeting for parties interested in the medical marijuana manufacturing process. There will be an overview of the new law, a discussion of potential rules necessary to implement that law, available information pertaining to the manufacturer selection process, and an overall timeline for the program.
Gov. Dayton signed the medical marijuana program, which is one of the most limited and restrictive in the country, in May after a lengthy struggle with patients, supporters, and law enforcement.
Gov. Mark Dayton has signed SB 2470, making Minnesota the 22nd state with a compassionate medical marijuana law. While the new law contains unnecessary restrictions, it will bring needed relief to some very deserving patients and their families.
Passage of this law was never certain, and, at times, political pundits dismissed the idea that the legislature could agree to any kind of program; but patients, families, and advocates prevailed.
While lawmakers had the pleasure of actually casting the votes, they would not have been in a position to do so without the tireless work of all the advocates, patients, and their families. We look forward to continuing working with Minnesotans to protect all the sick and suffering who can benefit from the medical use of marijuana.
A battle is underway in Minnesota, where Gov. Mark Dayton is standing in the way of an otherwise widely supported medical marijuana bill because he does not want to upset his friends in law enforcement.
The governor is under intense pressure to support the bill, but time is running out in the legislative session, so we are cranking up the heat with an aggressive TV ad that will begin airing tonight throughout Minnesota. It features St. Paul mom Angela Garin and her five-year-old son, Paxton — who suffers from a rare condition that causes hundreds of seizures per day — calling on Gov. Dayton to stop blocking the legislation. It should make waves because the governor is currently under fire in the media fortelling patients and parents like Angela to just find medical marijuana on the street!
On Wednesday, medical marijuana patients and advocates held an emotional press conference slamming Gov. Mark Dayton for bowing to law enforcement and stalling on a medical marijuana bill currently being considered in the Minnesota legislature.
Those present, several of them parents of children with severe forms of epilepsy who could benefit from medical marijuana, said the governor told them they should risk arrest and obtain their medicine from the illicit market.
"He told me, 'You can buy it on the street. It's decriminalized in Minnesota. There's a good distribution system here already,'" Jessica Hauser, 36, of Woodbury, told The Associated Press in an interview.
She said he also told her another option would be to buy it another state where medical marijuana was legal and bring it back to Minnesota.
"I told the governor that was unacceptable," said Hauser, who has another son who is 5. "I shouldn't have to become a criminal to help my son. I could lose both my children."
A group of local medical marijuana patients and advocates gathered in front of the Minnesota governor’s mansion Thursday to deliver a very large and provocative “get better soon” card to Gov. Mark Dayton, who is recovering from hip surgery. The governor is currently holding up a widely supported bill that would allow seriously ill Minnesotans to use medical marijuana if their doctors recommend it because it is opposed by some law enforcement officials.
Following a brief news conference hosted by Minnesotans for Compassionate Care, patients, their family members, and supporters signed the huge greeting card which was then delivered to the governor.
Gov. Dayton has said he will only support the medical marijuana bill, HF 1818, if it has the approval of law enforcement officials, who he instructed to work with the bill’s sponsor, Rep. Carly Melin, to reach a compromise. Rep. Melin met with leaders of law enforcement organizations this week, but they steadfastly refused to support workable medical marijuana legislation, resulting in Rep. Melin temporarily removing the bill from the House Government Operations agenda.
The governor took notice. After meeting with advocates, he has promised to try to work out a compromise.
Late on March 4, the Minnesota House Health and Human Services Policy Committee approved HF 1818 in an overwhelming, bipartisan vote. The compassionate bill will be heard next in the House Government Operations committee.
HF 1818, sponsored by Rep. Carly Melin, would allow Minnesotans who suffer from specified conditions to legally obtain, possess, and use marijuana with their doctors’ recommendations. It also creates a state-regulated program to dispense medical marijuana to qualified patients in a timely and safe manner. The Minnesota Legislature passed a similar proposal in 2009, only to see then Governor Tim Pawlenty veto it.
Is Gov. Mark Dayton – thankfully – softening his irrational opposition to medical marijuana? It appears as though that might be the case. Yesterday, ECM reported that Gov. Dayton will allow staff to work with patients and advocates on the issue of medical marijuana. He even expressed interest in researching the issue himself. While we still “don’t know where he stands,” according to Heather Azzi, political director for Minnesotans for Compassionate Care, with your help, we can educate the governor’s staff and demonstrate just how ridiculous law enforcement’s “blanket opposition” to medical marijuana really is.
Twenty states and Washington, D.C. all have workable medical marijuana laws protecting seriously ill patients from arrest and prosecution for using medical marijuana with a physician’s recommendation. Why should Minnesotans suffering from cancer, HIV/AIDS, Dravet syndrome, PTSD, ALS, MS, and other enumerated conditions be forced to break the law in order to have a better quality of life? Ask the governor to listen to patients and providers and be skeptical of the “chicken little” opposition with which certain members of law enforcement provide him.