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NORML’s Weekly Legislative Update

  • by Paul Armentano, NORML Deputy Director February 11, 2010

    Lawmakers around the country are debating a record number of marijuana law reform bills in 2010. NORML’s Weekly Legislative Round Up is your one-stop guide to pending marijuana law reform legislation around the country, along with tips for influencing the policies of your state.

    ** A note to first time readers: NORML can not introduce legislation in your state. Nor can any other non-profit advocacy organization. Only your state representatives, or in some cases an individual constituent (by way of their representative; this is known as introducing legislation ‘by request’) can do so. NORML can — and does — work closely with like-minded politicians and citizens to reform marijuana laws, and lobbies on behalf of these efforts. But ultimately the most effective way — and the only way — to successfully achieve statewide marijuana law reform is for local stakeholders and citizens to become involved in the political process and make the changes they want to see. We can’t do it without you.

    Washington: Senate lawmakers voted 37 to 11 in favor of Senate Bill 5798, which seeks to expand the state’s nearly twelve-year-old medical marijuana law. As approved, SB 5798 allows certain health care professionals – including naturopaths, physician’s assistants, osteopathic physicians, and advanced registered nurse practitioners – to legally recommend marijuana therapy to their patients. Under present law, only licensed physicians may legally recommend medicinal cannabis.

    Senate Bill 5798 now awaits action from House lawmakers. The measure is scheduled to be heard by members of the House Committee on Health Care & Wellness on Thursday, February 18. You can contact members of the House in favor of the bill here.

    New Hampshire: Members of the House Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee voted 16 to 2 today in favor of House Bill 1653. As amended by the Committee, this proposal reduces the penalties for minor marijuana possession offenses (up to 1/4 of one ounce) from a criminal misdemeanor punishable by up to one year in jail and a $2,000 fine to a nominal monetary penalty of no more than $200.00 (and no criminal record). You can contact your member of the House and urge them to support HB 1653 by visiting NORML’s ‘Take Action Center’ here.

    Washington, DC: Members of the DC City Council’s Committee on Health postponed their first hearing (scheduled for today) on implementing the District’s new medical marijuana law because of inclement weather. The hearing will likely be rescheduled for next week. (Check here for new date and time.) You can read NORML’s written testimony to the Committee here.

    Tennessee: On Tuesday, February 16 from 9am-2pm, Tennessee NORML is hosting a legislative “Day on the Hill” at the capitol in Nashville to lobby on behalf of the the Tennessee Safe Access to Medical Cannabis Act. To participate in this event and show your support for medical marijuana law reform in Tennessee, please visit here.

    For information on additional state and federal marijuana law reform legislation, please visit NORML’s ‘Take Action Center’ here.

    14 Responses to “NORML’s Weekly Legislative Update”

    1. James Crosby says:

      Thanks NORML for all you do, and the updates! Thanks for what you are doing in Oregon! I love the Oregon Cannabis Tax Act! Thanks for working with Paul Stanford to implement fair cannabis laws! We love you!

    2. ckdk30 says:

      Now it kinda seems like were getting somewhere.Iowa’s hearing is the 17th next Wed cant wait for the results

    3. Just me says:

      Wow theres some things happening…thanks norml and all others involved…with your help will defeat this beast.

    4. truthandconsequences says:

      Every candidate for election or re-election to a state or federal legislative or executive office should be pressed to state his/her position on marijuana prohibition, and those positions should then be made known to the voting public. This would serve the cause by raising the level of public debate, and at the same time putting public officials on notice that there are a significant number of voters who have strong feelings about this issue.

      Right now the politicians are all getting a free pass. None of them have any reason to believe that many people care. None of them has yet lost a job because of continued support of prohibition.

      Perhaps NORML, through its state affiliates, can find a way to publish this information on its various websites?

    5. Andrew says:

      I second OCTA 2010. Lets get it done Oregon!!!

    6. CJ says:

      Whens it going to be legal in Oregon!??! I am tired of buying semi ok weed from drug dealers for inflated prices and getting ripped off.. i mean comon im a broke college student and this helps me study! If i could grow i my self it would be hella better strains and no more getting my sacks pinched!

    7. WHOCARES says:

      Marijuana will never be legal…Politicians enjoy their cocaine and alcohol, not their marijuana :)

    8. ckdk30 says:

      Alcohol is legal n some dont drink, but do they care if u do? no they dont. So if cannabis was legal you then would hav a choice to use it or not just like alcohol,tobbacco,prescription pills.

    9. Dizzle says:

      I-1068 an initiative to remove all criminal penalties for possession, sale, or cultivation of marijuana in Washington state is LIVE!

      http://sensiblewashington.org

      Check it out and show some support. Even a simple facebook add helps

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