In 2011, Jesse Boucher of Puff Dannys shows a vaporizer, which allows people to inhale vapors instead of smoking medical marijuana.(Photo: Daniel Mears / The Detroit News)Buy Photo
Lansing – — Four state lawmakers are reviving bills to legalize an array of medical marijuana products and dispensaries where they’d be sold after last year’s effort was shot down by last-minute criticism from law enforcement and health groups.
Republican Rep. Mike Callton of Nashville, main sponsor of one of the bills, argues Michigan needs clear laws and regulations allowing “provisioning centers” where patients legally get marijuana in various forms suited to their needs.
Last year’s bills died during the two-week lame-duck legislative session in December as opponents said police and public health agencies hadn’t been allowed to weigh in and saw problems with what was proposed. The sponsors promise to remedy any shortcomings this time around.
Callton, a chiropractor by profession, said two related bills with House and Senate sponsors aim to “establish safe access for patients and allow for the use of alternative forms of marijuana, such as medibles and topicals.”
His provisioning center bill calls for law enforcement access to make sure laws are being followed, at least annual health inspections, mandated laboratory certification that the products on sale are safe and a set of rules developed by the state’s Licensing and Regulatory Affairs Department. The second measure would clarify that smokable marijuana isn’t the only form of it that’s legal.
The other bill sponsors are Rep. Lisa Posthumus Lyons, R-Alto, Sen. David Knezek, D-Dearborn Heights, and Sen. Mike Shirkey, R-Clarklake.
Their legislation seeks to clarify a shadowy area of state law so patients know what forms of the marijuana they can buy that 63 percent of state voters approved for medicinal use in 2008.
Affected users include Lansing resident Steve Green, who takes capsules containing a liquid form of cannabis to control epilepsy, and Ida Chinonis of Grand Blanc, who has found marijuana oil best controls seizures her 6-year-old daughter suffers as a result of a genetic disorder.
In Michigan, the number of people obtaining state cards that permit medical marijuana use has declined from 119,470 to 96,408 during the last three years, and Green says it’s at least partly because they fear state registration brings them added scrutiny or see no benefit from it.
“I’ve had people ask me: ‘After all you’ve been through, why do you renew your …Read More