New Bill Would Allow Medical Marijuana Dispensaries to Operate Legally
Two bills headed to the Michigan Senate could soon make life easier for those who use medical marijuana by clarifying the state’s 2008 law.
The bills gained wide approval in the state House.
Now it’s up to the senate to decide whether or not medical marijuana dispensaries can legally operate in Michigan, and if other products should be available.
“It’s been a very confusing topic on dispensaries.”
One bill would give patients who use medical marijuana a thrid option to obtain the drug.
“Right now your patient is required to either grow their own ,or get it from their caregiver, and there’s times that you’re going to have problems with your own plants, and you should be able to have a back up to be able to go to a dispensary,” says Kenneth Lee from the Cadillac Area Compassion Clinic.
Lee knows first hand. After suffering a debilitating back injury, he has used medical marijuana to live a pain-free life.
“This medicine needs to be made available to people that are getting off their pharmaceuticals and are living a much healthier and happier life.”
Wexford County Prosecutor Tony Badovinac, who recently shut down a number of compassion clinics, would have to disagree. He believes this would allow more people to take advantage of an already abused industry.
“Will it open it up for abuse? Sure. Have we seen abuse already? Sure. There’s a lot of people out there that think marijuana is now legal. It isn’t. It simply isn’t,” says Badovinac.
The legislation would also expand the state’s definition of marijuana-infused products- which would allow for the sale of foods containing the drug.
“Now a lot of people, and children, don’t need to be smoking it. You should be using extracts,” Lee explains.
If the bill does pass, cities and townships will ultimately have some authority as to where dispensaries can operate.
“I think maybe that’s what it’s going to end up, there’s going to be pockets of civilization that don’t want it and pockets that do.”
A lieutenant from the Michigan State Police says they don’t have a current stance on the new bills.