Yesterday, House Majority Floor Leader Rep. Eric Barlow (R) introduced a bill to legalize medical cannabis in the Cowboy State! Under House Bill 0278, cannabis would be tested and regulated by the Department of Agriculture.
Unfortunately, Wyoming is one of the 18 states with no effective cannabis law, even though over 70% of Wyomingites support legalizing cannabis for medical use.
Medical cannabis is proven to be effective in the treatment of a variety of debilitating medical conditions, and seriously ill people should not be subject to arrest and criminal penalties for using a safer treatment option than opiates.
Please contact your lawmakers today to ask them to support HB 0278. Then, forward this message to your family and friends in Wyoming!
The Wyoming Legislature is only meeting for a limited, budget session this year, but two-thirds of senators voted to spend time considering an increase in the penalties for possessing marijuana products.
Senate File 23, sponsored by the Joint Judiciary Committee, would set the threshold for a felony charge — for mere possession — at three grams of concentrate, three ounces of edibles, or 36 ounces of liquids (such as infused soda). This is extremely low; one tray of marijuana brownies could easily weigh one pound (16 ounces) and contain only 1/8 of an ounce of cannabis flower. Yet, three ounces of flower is required to trigger a felony charge under current law.
Instead of wasting time trying to give more citizens felony records, which will have a huge negative impact on their ability to get a job, housing, or an education, the legislature should consider more sensible policies. If you are a Wyoming resident, please ask your lawmakers to eliminate the existing felony for possession of marijuana flower and remove jail time for possessing personal use amounts of cannabis.
A new bill, HB 157, has been introduced in Wyoming by Rep. Mark Baker (R-Sweetwater) and a bipartisan group of legislators that would eliminate criminal penalties for possession of small amounts of marijuana. This would avoid branding someone with a lifelong criminal record for using a substance that is safer than alcohol.
HB 157 would apply to up to three ounces of cannabis or marijuana products (such as edibles) containing 500 milligrams or less of THC. Under current Wyoming law, possession of even a tiny amount of marijuana carries a penalty of up to one year of incarceration and a fine of up to $1,000. Rep. Baker’s bill would reduce the penalty to a civil fine of up to $200.
If you are a Wyoming resident, please ask your legislators to stop arresting people for cannabis so law enforcement can focus on violent crime.