Most people think serious Republicans are heartless conservatives that have no compassion and don’t know how to have any fun whatsoever. Not true.
Case in point? Rep. Joel Bomgar (R) is sponsoring HB179, which seeks to establish a medical marijuana pilot program. Rep. Kathy Sykes (D) is cosponsoring the bill with Bomgar. Remember in the 2014 session that Sen. Josh Harkins authored a bill legalizing cannabis oil. With 28 states and the District of Columbia with medical or recreational marijuana programs (including neighboring Arkansas), it’s not like this is a new concept. But kind of like fart jokes, it makes you nervously chuckle a little.
Bomgar is a serious policy guy. To wit, HB180 is a industrial hemp bill, so the medical marijuana thing doesn’t seem to be a passing fancy (Sykes cosponsored that one, too).
Here are the main particulars from the medical marijuana bill.
a) “Allowable amount of marijuana” means:
(i) Two and five-tenths (2.5) ounces of marijuana, and
(ii) The quantity of marijuana products as established by regulation of the department.
(b) “Bona fide physician-patient relationship” means:
(i) A physician and patient have a treatment or consulting relationship, during the course of which the physician has completed an assessment of the patient’s medical history and current medical condition, including an appropriate examination;
(ii) The physician has consulted with the patient with respect to the patient’s debilitating medical condition; and
(iii) The physician is available to or offers to provide follow-up care and treatment to the patient.
(c) “Marijuana products” means concentrated marijuana, marijuana extracts, and products that are infused with marijuana or an extract thereof and are intended for use or consumption by humans. The term includes, without limitation, edible marijuana products, beverages, topical products, ointments, oils, and tinctures.
(d) “Marijuana testing facility” or “testing facility” means an independent entity registered with the department pursuant to this act to analyze the safety and potency of marijuana.
(e) “Cardholder” means a qualifying patient or a designated caregiver who has been issued and possesses a valid registry identification card.
(f) “Debilitating medical condition” means any of the following conditions: cancer, glaucoma, spastic quadriplegia, positive status for human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS), seizures, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), Crohn’s disease, multiple sclerosis, ulcerative colitis, intractable pain, or any other serious medical condition or its treatment added by the department, as provided for in Section 5 of this act.
Bipartisanship at it’s finest. Congrats Reps. Bomgar and Sykes. You’ve authored our #msleg . . . . .#billoftheday.