Medical marijuana bill introduced in Idaho Legislature
Idaho Rep. Tom Trail (R-Moscow) introduced HB 370 in the Idaho house today.
Idaho Compassionate Use Medical Marijuana Act would permit patients with qualifying debilitating medical conditions to be dispensed up to 2 ounces of marijuana every 28 days from state-authorized alternative treatment centers, according to Betsy Russell of The Spokesman-Review..
The potential law would require that patients be 18 or older and register with the state. Additionally all caregivers would be required to submit to criminal background check and fingerprinting.
The Act also includes a provision that at least two centers would be established in the three geographical zones of the state, since the bill has no provision allowing for in-home cultivation. The first two centers would be required to be non-profit but any additional centers would be allowed to turn a profit if approved by the state.
Rep. Trail proposed similar legislation last year. The proposal received an informational hearing from the House Health & Welfare Committee but stalled after that.
The bill will allow the treatment centers to sell paraphernalia, which is unfortunately very illegal in Idaho. The bill also says that any qualifying patient shall not be denied employment in the public or private sector on the basis of a positive test for marijuana.
To qualify for the program, a patients must be diagnosed with a chronic or debilitating disease or medical condition, or its treatment, that produces one or more of the following: severe debilitating pain, severe nausea or vomiting, cachexia, seizures or muscle spasms, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis(ams), multiple sclerosis, terminal cancer, muscular dystrophy, or Crohn's disease and terminal illness among others.
In the Idaho Legislature, individual lawmakers can introduce legislation without a committee’s approval within the opening weeks of the session. Once introduced, the bill is assigned to committees for possible hearings and research.
In addition to Rep. Trail's bill, a separate group, Compassionate Idaho, is currently gathering signatures to bring medical marijuana to Idaho. Here's some information if you would like to help.
Under Current Idaho law, possession of any amount of marijuana is at minimum a misdemeanor, punishable by 1 year in jail and a $1,000 fine.