Tag Archives: marijuana

"There is no correlation between Morgan & Morgan and the medical marijuana," Stumbo spokesman Brian Wilkerson said.

House Speaker Greg Stumbo pitching personal-injury law firm in TV commercials

By John Cheves — jcheves@herald-leader.com

 

 

 

House Speaker Greg Stumbo has accepted a position as partner at Morgan & Morgan, a Florida-based personal-injury law firm whose founder, John Morgan, is a major financial backer of the movement to legalize medical marijuana.

In September, Stumbo, D-Prestonsburg, announced that he wants a debate in Kentucky about legalizing marijuana for medical purposes.

“I am open and leaning toward supporting the use of medical marijuana as I read more and more research,” Stumbo said on Sept. 24.

Through a spokesman, Stumbo this week said he came to his stand on medical marijuana after speaking to Floyd County constituents who support it.

“There is no correlation between Morgan & Morgan and the medical marijuana,” Stumbo spokesman Brian Wilkerson said.

John Morgan, a Lexington native who moved to Orlando, Fla., in 1971, gave $250,000 over the summer to People United For Medical Marijuana and produced several commercials to support the effort. He expects to give several million dollars more, he said this week.

On his firm’s website, Morgan wrote that medical marijuana helped his father while he was dying from cancer and emphysema.

“Medical marijuana has been proven to give our loved ones relief they need, helping with pain, appetite, seizures and spasms,” Morgan says in a radio commercial he recently produced in Florida. “Unfortunately, Tallahassee politicians refused to vote on the issue last session. They wouldn’t even hear testimony from patients and their families.”

In an interview, Morgan said he’s glad to hear about Stumbo’s public comments on medical marijuana, but he’s not the impetus.

“Greg and I have never talked about it, but I’m spending a boatload of money to get it on the ballot in Florida this fall,” Morgan said. “Now that I know he feels this way, maybe we can do something in Kentucky, too.”

Steve Robertson, chairman of the Kentucky Republican Party, was ready to draw the opposite conclusion.

“We at least now know that Stumbo bases his public positions on his private finances,” Robertson said. “After standing in opposition to the hemp bill, it’s mind-boggling that he’d suddenly turn around and advocate for medical marijuana based on his new job.”

During the 2013 legislative session, Stumbo criticized and worked against — though he ultimately voted for — a bill that established a licensing system for Kentucky hemp farmers if the federal government decriminalizes that plant, a close relative to marijuana. Stumbo said he agreed with police officers who argued that hemp and marijuana crops could be confused, making their jobs more difficult.

Later this year, Stumbo went to work for Morgan & Morgan. He recently began starring in television commercials for the firm, which employs 240 lawyers in a half-dozen states, including former Florida Gov. Charlie Crist.

“I’m Greg Stumbo of Morgan & Morgan,” Stumbo says in a 30-second spot currently airing on Lexington stations. “As attorney general of Kentucky, I was honored to be your personal attorney.”

Stumbo, who was attorney general from 2003 to 2007, goes on to tell viewers: “The insurance company doesn’t have your family’s best interest at heart. We do. Call us.”

Speaking Wednesday, Morgan explained the hire: “Stumbo is a consumer advocate. That’s what he’s done both professionally and politically. He knows his way around Kentucky and he’s obviously well-known among his peers.”

John Cheves: (859) 231-3266. Twitter: @BGPolitics. Blog: bluegrasspolitics.bloginky.com

Read more here: http://www.kentucky.com/2013/10/17/2881362/house-speaker-greg-stumbo-pitching.html#storylink=cpy

"There is no correlation between Morgan & Morgan and the medical marijuana," Stumbo spokesman Brian Wilkerson said.

House Speaker Greg Stumbo pitching personal-injury law firm in TV commercials

By John Cheves — jcheves@herald-leader.com

 

 

 

House Speaker Greg Stumbo has accepted a position as partner at Morgan & Morgan, a Florida-based personal-injury law firm whose founder, John Morgan, is a major financial backer of the movement to legalize medical marijuana.

In September, Stumbo, D-Prestonsburg, announced that he wants a debate in Kentucky about legalizing marijuana for medical purposes.

“I am open and leaning toward supporting the use of medical marijuana as I read more and more research,” Stumbo said on Sept. 24.

Through a spokesman, Stumbo this week said he came to his stand on medical marijuana after speaking to Floyd County constituents who support it.

“There is no correlation between Morgan & Morgan and the medical marijuana,” Stumbo spokesman Brian Wilkerson said.

John Morgan, a Lexington native who moved to Orlando, Fla., in 1971, gave $250,000 over the summer to People United For Medical Marijuana and produced several commercials to support the effort. He expects to give several million dollars more, he said this week.

On his firm’s website, Morgan wrote that medical marijuana helped his father while he was dying from cancer and emphysema.

“Medical marijuana has been proven to give our loved ones relief they need, helping with pain, appetite, seizures and spasms,” Morgan says in a radio commercial he recently produced in Florida. “Unfortunately, Tallahassee politicians refused to vote on the issue last session. They wouldn’t even hear testimony from patients and their families.”

In an interview, Morgan said he’s glad to hear about Stumbo’s public comments on medical marijuana, but he’s not the impetus.

“Greg and I have never talked about it, but I’m spending a boatload of money to get it on the ballot in Florida this fall,” Morgan said. “Now that I know he feels this way, maybe we can do something in Kentucky, too.”

Steve Robertson, chairman of the Kentucky Republican Party, was ready to draw the opposite conclusion.

“We at least now know that Stumbo bases his public positions on his private finances,” Robertson said. “After standing in opposition to the hemp bill, it’s mind-boggling that he’d suddenly turn around and advocate for medical marijuana based on his new job.”

During the 2013 legislative session, Stumbo criticized and worked against — though he ultimately voted for — a bill that established a licensing system for Kentucky hemp farmers if the federal government decriminalizes that plant, a close relative to marijuana. Stumbo said he agreed with police officers who argued that hemp and marijuana crops could be confused, making their jobs more difficult.

Later this year, Stumbo went to work for Morgan & Morgan. He recently began starring in television commercials for the firm, which employs 240 lawyers in a half-dozen states, including former Florida Gov. Charlie Crist.

“I’m Greg Stumbo of Morgan & Morgan,” Stumbo says in a 30-second spot currently airing on Lexington stations. “As attorney general of Kentucky, I was honored to be your personal attorney.”

Stumbo, who was attorney general from 2003 to 2007, goes on to tell viewers: “The insurance company doesn’t have your family’s best interest at heart. We do. Call us.”

Speaking Wednesday, Morgan explained the hire: “Stumbo is a consumer advocate. That’s what he’s done both professionally and politically. He knows his way around Kentucky and he’s obviously well-known among his peers.”

John Cheves: (859) 231-3266. Twitter: @BGPolitics. Blog: bluegrasspolitics.bloginky.com

Read more here: http://www.kentucky.com/2013/10/17/2881362/house-speaker-greg-stumbo-pitching.html#storylink=cpy

Kentucky Law Enforcement Reacts To Illinois Marijuana Law

By Rob Canning

Enlarge image

Illinois’ legalization of medicinal marijuana takes effect January 1st and sets up a 4-year pilot program for state-run dispensaries and cultivation centers. While Illinois is predicted to enact some of the strictest regulations in the nation, law enforcement officials and prosecutors from neighboring states worry about transport of the drug over state lines.

Kentucky’s McCracken County borders Illinois. County Attorney Michael Murphy said the state can still prosecute people for possession regardless of the source.

“Possession of marijuana in the state of Kentucky in accordance to federal law is still a crime,” said Murphy. “So, the fact that somebody acquired it legally where they were before they transported it to Kentucky, they still could be charged locally. This is just another source of marijuana and, to me, the source becomes legally irrelevant; it’s the simple possession that’s the crime.”

Murphy said the county court handles 10 to 15 simple possession charges each week. Murphy said people could also face federal ramifications for transport over state lines, but federal courts rarely prosecute for simple possession. Kentucky State Police Sergeant Richard Saint-Blancard said his main concern stems from drivers under the influence and he hopes Illinois’ law won’t increase that problem.

Tags:

marijuana

kentucky state police

medical marijuana

richard saint-blancard

michael murphy

illinois

AUGUST 21ST AT THE KENTUCKY CAPITOL BLDG., FRANKFORT, KY…

 

 

Irv Rosenfeld

 

 

August 21st at 1 pm Kentucky legislature will be making history by finally
discussing medical marijuana. Through KY4MM’s lobbying we have found a
senior member of the house of Representatives that will introduce our bill
before the Kentucky Health and Welfare committee members. We will discuss
medical marijuana and will also take some time to introduce federal
medical marijuana patient Irvin Rosenfeld. He will testify to being a
federal patient through the “Investigational New Drug Program” since 1982.
We would like to invite everyone to come out and fill the halls of the
capital building in support of the legalization of medical marijuana. If
you wish to help please meet with your state senator and state house
representative and explain why you believe it should be legalized.

August 21, 2013 @ 1pm est

Health and Welfare Committee Meeting

KY Capital Building

 

700 Capitol Ave Loop, Frankfort, KY 40601

We would be forever grateful if you would be willing to share this
information with anyone that you feel might benefit or help.

Regards,

Jaime Montalvo
502-681-3795

www.ky4mm.com
https://www.facebook.com/KY4MM
https://twitter.com/ky4mm
ky4mm2014@gmail.com

Ky.’s senators blocked in effort to legalize hemp

By BRUCE SCHREINER, Associated Press

 

 

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — Kentucky’s U.S. senators suffered a setback Thursday in their efforts to re-establish industrial hemp as a legal crop, but they vowed to continue their campaign after getting blocked as they tried to attach hemp language to the Senate farm bill.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and Sen. Rand Paul said they would oppose the Senate farm legislation.

Their amendment would have removed federal restrictions on the domestic production of industrial hemp. The crop once flourished in Kentucky until it was banned decades ago when the federal government classified it as a controlled substance related to marijuana.

Hemp has a negligible content of THC, the psychoactive compound that gives marijuana users a high.

The push by McConnell and Paul to legalize industrial hemp comes after Kentucky’s legislature passed a bill this year to allow the crop to be reintroduced in the Bluegrass State, but only if the federal government lifted its prohibition on the plant.

“Although we’re disappointed in the lack of consideration of our industrial hemp amendment, it is only the beginning of our legislative efforts,” the Republican U.S. senators said in a joint statement. “We are committed to continuing to look at all options to win approval of this important legislation for job creation in Kentucky.”

McConnell and Paul blamed majority-Senate Democrats for blocking consideration of additional amendments to the five-year farm bill, including their hemp proposal.

“This year’s Senate farm bill is in need of serious improvement and the refusal to allow better ideas and more sensible allocations of taxpayer dollars to be considered is very disappointing,” McConnell and Paul said. “We will be opposing the Senate farm bill as a result.”

The Courier-Journal first reported the senators’ reaction to the hemp amendment’s setback.

The farm bill advanced on a 75-22 procedural Senate vote Thursday that sets up a vote to pass the measure next Monday. The bill would cost almost $100 billion annually and would set policy for farm subsidies, food stamps and other farm and food aid programs.

Republican House leaders have said their chamber will vote on the bill, possibly as soon as this month.

In Kentucky, the industrial hemp movement has firmly taken root as the plant’s advocates hope for a breakthrough at the federal level.

State Agriculture Commissioner James Comer says its reintroduction would give farmers a new crop and would create processing jobs to turn the fiber and seeds into products ranging from paper to biofuels. Dozens of countries already produce the crop.

Comer went to Washington to meet with federal officials to lobby for a change on hemp policy at the federal level.

Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear let the state’s hemp bill become law without his signature. The Democratic governor said he wouldn’t sign the legislation out of concerns, shared by some in law enforcement, that marijuana growers could camouflage their illegal crops with hemp plants.

Read more: http://www.sfgate.com/news/article/Ky-s-senators-blocked-in-effort-to-legalize-hemp-4584896.php#ixzz2VUQvurVc

Kentucky agriculture commissioner brings pro-hemp message to Lexington

 

hemp-300x200

 

 

Published: January 3, 2013

By Beverly Fortune — bfortune@herald-leader.com

Kentucky Agriculture Commissioner James Comer brought his pro-hemp message to the Lexington Forum on Thursday.

Since taking office in 2011, Comer has held town meetings in all 120 Kentucky counties, inviting local legislators to attend, to promote industrial hemp. In the early 19th century, Kentucky was the nation’s leading hemp producer.

Comer is backing a bill in the General Assembly that would permit industrial hemp to again be cultivated.

Hemp would produce income for farmers and create manufacturing jobs for products using hemp, he said.

Farmers growing hemp would have to be licensed by the state and their fields inspected regularly, Comer said.

The Department of Agriculture, the state’s largest regulatory agency, would oversee cultivation and sales of the crop.

Hemp is a sustainable, annual crop that “is easy and cheap to grow,” he said. “It grows well in this climate and requires very little fertilizer or insecticides.” The plant grows best in marginal soils found in many Central and Eastern Kentucky counties.

For people, including law enforcement officers, who are concerned that marijuana might be grown in hemp fields and the hemp and marijuana plants confused, Comer said the two look completely different.

Marijuana is a short, bushy plant with lots of leaves; industrial hemp is tall, with a thick stalk and few leaves.

When grown near each other, hemp and marijuana cross-pollinate, and the hemp destroys buds on the marijuana plants, he said. “Industrial hemp is an enemy of marijuana,” Comer said. “Law enforcement should be for industrial hemp.”

The long-dormant Industrial Hemp Commission, revived under Comer, has contracted with the University of Kentucky College of Agriculture to conduct an economic-impact study.

For the crop to be grown successfully, there has to be a market for the fibers, Comer said. “Many products we make from plastic, like car dashboards, armrests, carpet and fabrics, are made from hemp in other countries. Hemp is also used to make paper.”

Comer said one major benefit of growing hemp would be the manufacturing jobs created to produce items using hemp fibers, seed and oil.

“The United States is the only industrial country in the world that doesn’t allow industrial hemp to be grown, yet many products Americans buy have hemp as an ingredient,” he said. Hemp is legally grown in Canada and China, and throughout Europe.

If the General Assembly approves growing industrial hemp, the federal government would have to lift restrictions before it could be grown. “I want us to be ready when the federal government gives the go-ahead. I’m convinced they’re going to do that,” Comer said.

Beverly Fortune: (859) 231-3251. Twitter: @BFortune2010.

Read more here: http://www.kentucky.com/2013/01/03/2463466/state-agriculture-commissioner.html#storylink=cpy

HR 2306 `Ending Federal Marijuana Prohibition Act of 2011′

HR 2306 IH

112th CONGRESS

1st Session

H. R. 2306

To limit the application of Federal laws to the distribution and consumption of marihuana, and for other purposes.

IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

June 23, 2011

Mr. FRANK of Massachusetts (for himself, Mr. PAUL, Mr. CONYERS, Ms. LEE of California, Mr. POLIS, and Mr. COHEN) introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on Energy and Commerce, and in addition to the Committee on the Judiciary, for a period to be subsequently determined by the Speaker, in each case for consideration of such provisions as fall within the jurisdiction of the committee concerned


A BILL

To limit the application of Federal laws to the distribution and consumption of marihuana, and for other purposes.

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,
SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.
    This Act may be cited as the `Ending Federal Marijuana Prohibition Act of 2011′.
SEC. 2. APPLICATION OF THE CONTROLLED SUBSTANCES ACT TO MARIHUANA.
    Part A of the Controlled Substances Act (21 U.S.C. 801 et seq.) is amended by adding at the end the following:
`SEC. 103. APPLICATION OF THIS ACT TO MARIHUANA.
    `(a) Prohibition on Certain Shipping or Transportation- This Act shall not apply to marihuana, except that it shall be unlawful only to ship or transport, in any manner or by any means whatsoever, marihuana, from one State, Territory, or District of the United States, or place noncontiguous to but subject to the jurisdiction thereof, into any other State, Territory, or District of the United States, or place noncontiguous to but subject to the jurisdiction thereof, or from any foreign country into any State, Territory, or District of the United States, or place noncontiguous to but subject to the jurisdiction thereof, when such marihuana is intended, by any person interested therein, to be received, possessed, sold, or in any manner used, either in the original package or otherwise, in violation of any law of such State, Territory, or District of the United States, or place noncontiguous to but subject to the jurisdiction thereof.
    `(b) Penalty- Whoever knowingly violates subsection (a) shall be fined under title 18, United States Code, or imprisoned not more than one year, or both.’.
SEC. 3. DEREGULATION OF MARIHUANA.
    (a) Removed From Schedule of Controlled Substances- Schedule I(c) of section 202(c) of the Controlled Substances Act (21 U.S.C. 812(c)) is amended–
      (1) by striking `marihuana’; and
      (2) by striking `tetrahydrocannabinols’.
    (b) Removal of Prohibition on Import and Export- Section 1010 of the Controlled Substances Import and Export Act (21 U.S.C. 960) is amended–
      (1) by striking subparagraph (G) of subsection (b)(1);
      (2) by striking subparagraph (G) of subsection (b)(2); and
      (3) by striking paragraph (4) of subsection (b).
SEC. 4. CONFORMING AMENDMENTS TO CONTROLLED SUBSTANCES ACT.
    (a) Section 102(44) of the Controlled Substances Act (21 U.S.C. 802(44)) is amended by striking `marihuana’.
    (b) Part D of the Controlled Substances Act (21 U.S.C. 841 et seq.) is amended as follows:
      (1) In section 401–
        (A) by striking subsection (b)(1)(A)(vii);
        (B) by striking subsection (b)(1)(B)(vii);
        (C) by striking subsection (b)(1)(D); and
        (D) by striking subsection (b)(4).
      (2) In section 402(c)(2)(B), by striking `marihuana’.
      (3) In section 403(d)(1), by striking `marihuana’.
      (4) In section 418(a), by striking the last sentence.
      (5) In section 419(a), by striking the last sentence.
      (6) In section 422(d), in the matter preceding paragraph (1), by striking `marijuana’.
      (7) In section 422(d)(5), by striking `, such as a marihuana cigarette,’.
SEC. 5. CONSTRUCTION.
    No provision of this Act shall be construed to affect Federal drug testing policies, and each Federal agency shall conduct a review of its drug testing policies not later than 30 days after the date of enactment of this Act to ensure that the language of any such policy is in accordance with this section.

END

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HR 6134 ‘Truth in Trials Act’ to provide an affirmative defense for the medical use of marijuana

HR 6134 IH

112th CONGRESS

2d Session

H. R. 6134

To amend title 18, United States Code, to provide an affirmative defense for the medical use of marijuana in accordance with the laws of the various States, and for other purposes.

IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

July 17, 2012

Mr. FARR (for himself, Mr. PAUL, Mr. COHEN, Mr. ROHRABACHER, Mr. FRANK of Massachusetts, Ms. LEE of California, Mr. HINCHEY, Mr. STARK, Mr. BLUMENAUER, Mr. MORAN, Mr. GRIJALVA, Mr. POLIS, Ms. WOOLSEY, Mr. WAXMAN, Mr. AMASH, Mr. RANGEL, Mr. MCGOVERN, Mr. GEORGE MILLER of California, and Mr. NADLER) introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on the Judiciary


A BILL

To amend title 18, United States Code, to provide an affirmative defense for the medical use of marijuana in accordance with the laws of the various States, and for other purposes.

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,
SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.
    This Act may be cited as the `Truth in Trials Act’.
SEC. 2. PROVIDING AN AFFIRMATIVE DEFENSE FOR THE MEDICAL USE OF MARIJUANA; SEIZURE OF PROPERTY.
    (a) In General- Chapter 221 of title 18, United States Code, is amended by striking section 3436 and all that follows through the end of the chapter and inserting the following:
`Sec. 3436. Affirmative defense for conduct regarding the medical use of marijuana; seizure of property.
    `(a) Any person facing prosecution or a proceeding for any marijuana-related offense under any Federal law shall have the right to introduce evidence demonstrating that the marijuana-related activities for which the person stands accused were performed in compliance with State law regarding the medical use of marijuana, or that the property which is subject to a proceeding was possessed in compliance with State law regarding the medical use of marijuana.
    `(b)(1) It is an affirmative defense to a prosecution or proceeding under any Federal law for marijuana-related activities, which the proponent must establish by a preponderance of the evidence, that those activities comply with State law regarding the medical use of marijuana.
    `(2) In a prosecution or a proceeding for a marijuana-related offense under any Federal criminal law, should a finder of fact determine, based on State law regarding the medical use of marijuana, that a defendant’s marijuana-related activity was performed primarily, but not exclusively, for medical purposes, the defendant may be found guilty of an offense only corresponding to the amount of marijuana determined to be for nonmedical purposes.
    `(c) Any property seized in connection with a prosecution or proceeding to which this section applies, with respect to which a person successfully makes a defense under this section, shall be returned to the owner not later than 10 days after the court finds the defense is valid, minus such material necessarily destroyed for testing purposes.
    `(d) Any marijuana seized under any Federal law shall be retained and not destroyed pending resolution of any forfeiture claim, if not later than 30 days after seizure the owner of the property notifies the Attorney General, or a duly authorized agent of the Attorney General, that a person with an ownership interest in the property is asserting an affirmative defense for the medical use of marijuana.
    `(e) No plant may be seized under any Federal law otherwise permitting such seizure if the plant is being grown or stored pursuant to a recommendation by a physician or an order of a State or municipal agency in accordance with State law regarding the medical use of marijuana.
    `(f) In this section, the term State includes the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and any other territory or possession of the United States.’.
    (b) Clerical Amendment- The table of sections at the beginning of chapter 221 of title 18, United States Code, is amended by striking the item relating to section 3436 and all that follows through the end of the table and inserting the following new item:
      `3436. Affirmative defense for conduct regarding the medical use of marijuana; seizure of property.’.

END

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H.R. 1983 ‘States Medical Marijuana Patient Protection Act’

HR 1983 IH

112th CONGRESS

1st Session

H. R. 1983

To provide for the rescheduling of marijuana and for the medical use of marijuana in accordance with the laws of the various States.

IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

May 25, 2011

Mr. FRANK of Massachusetts (for himself, Mr. ROHRABACHER, Mr. STARK, and Mr. POLIS) introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on Energy and Commerce


A BILL

To provide for the rescheduling of marijuana and for the medical use of marijuana in accordance with the laws of the various States.

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,
SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.
    This Act may be cited as the `States’ Medical Marijuana Patient Protection Act’.
SEC. 2. CONTROLLED SUBSTANCES ACT.
    (a) Schedule-
      (1) Not later than 6 months after the date of enactment of this Act, the Secretary of Health and Human Services, in cooperation with the National Academy of Sciences’ Institute of Medicine, shall submit to the Administrator of the Drug Enforcement Administration a recommendation on the listing of marijuana within the Controlled Substances Act (CSA), and shall recommend a listing other than `Schedule I’ or `Schedule II’.
      (2) Not later than 12 months after the date of enactment of this Act, the Administrator of the Drug Enforcement Administration shall, based upon the recommendation of the National Academy of Sciences, issue a notice of proposed rulemaking for the rescheduling of marijuana within the CSA, which shall include a recommendation to list marijuana as other than a `Schedule I’ or `Schedule II’ substance.
    (b) Limitations on the Application of the Controlled Substances Act-
      (1) IN GENERAL- No provision of the Controlled Substances Act shall prohibit or otherwise restrict in a State in which the medical use of marijuana is legal under State law–
        (A) the prescription or recommendation of marijuana for medical use by a medical professional or the certification by a medical professional that a patient has a condition for which marijuana may have therapeutic benefit;
        (B) an individual from obtaining, manufacturing, possessing, or transporting within their State marijuana for medical purposes, provided the activities are authorized under State law; or
        (C) a pharmacy or other entity authorized under local or State law to distribute medical marijuana to individuals authorized to possess medical marijuana under State law from obtaining, possessing or distributing marijuana to such individuals.
      (2) PRODUCTION- No provision of the Controlled Substances Act shall prohibit or otherwise restrict an entity authorized by a State or local government, in a State in which the possession and use of marijuana for medical purposes is legal from producing, processing, or distributing marijuana for such purposes.
SEC. 3. FEDERAL FOOD, DRUG, AND COSMETIC ACT.
    (a) In General- No provision of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act shall prohibit or otherwise restrict in a State in which the medical use of marijuana is legal under State law–
      (1) the prescription or recommendation of marijuana for medical use by a medical professional or the certification by a medical professional that a patient has a condition for which marijuana may have therapeutic benefit;
      (2) an individual from obtaining, manufacturing, possessing, or transporting within their State marijuana for medical purposes, provided the activities are authorized under State law; or
      (3) a pharmacy or other entity authorized under local or State law to distribute medical marijuana to individuals authorized to possess medical marijuana under State law from obtaining, possessing, or distributing marijuana to such individuals.
    (b) Production- No provision of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act shall prohibit or otherwise restrict an entity authorized by a State or local government, in a State in which the possession and use of marijuana for medical purposes is legal from producing, processing, or distributing marijuana for such purpose.
SEC. 4. RELATION OF ACT TO CERTAIN PROHIBITIONS RELATING TO SMOKING.
    This Act does not affect any Federal, State, or local law regulating or prohibiting smoking in public.

END

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Trading Sex for a "F–cking Happy Meal?

Mom Can’t Get Food Stamps After Drug Offense, Resorts to Prostitution to Feed her Kids

If she’d committed murder, Carla could have gotten assistance to feed her children. But because the crime she committed was related to drugs, she can’t.

December 21, 2012  |  

images2

Carla walked into my office with despair in her eyes. I was surprised. Carla has been doing well in her four months out of prison; she got off drugs, regained custody of her kids, and even enrolled in a local community college. 

Without much prodding she admitted to me that she had retuned to prostitution: “I am putting myself at risk for HIV to get my kids a f—ing happy meal.”

Despite looking high and low for a job, Carla explained, she was still unemployed. Most entry-level jobs felt out of reach with her drug record, but what’s worse, even the state wasn’t willing to throw her a temporary life preserver.

You see, Carla is from one of the 32 states in the country that ban anyone convicted of a drug felony from collecting food stamps. With the release of the Global Burden of Disease Study last week, it bears looking at how we are perpetuating burdens among the most vulnerable Americans with our outdated laws.

If she’d committed rape or murder, Carla could have gotten assistance to feed herself and her children, but because the crime she committed was a drug felony, Carla joined the hundreds of thousands of drug felons who are not eligible.

The 1996 passage of the Welfare Reform Act was supposedly implemented to prevent drug addicts from selling their food stamps for drugs. But that concern is virtually unwarranted today. Unlike old food-stamp coupons, today’s food stamps are distributed electronically, which makes selling or trading them quite difficult.

Nonetheless, the law persists.  According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, nine states have a lifetime ban for food-stamp eligibly for people convicted of drug felonies.  Twenty-three states have a partial ban, such as permitting eligibility for persons convicted of drug possession but not sale, or for persons enrolled in drug treatment programs.

Denying food stamp benefits to people convicted of drug offenses is an excessive and ineffective crime control strategy. The policy increases an individual’s risk of returning to prison by making it more difficult for people to survive after they get out, slowing or possibly even preventing their reintegration into society. People without the financial cushion necessary to get through the initial period of job searching and re-establishing a life have little choice but to turn to illegal means to make ends meet.

What’s more, the food-stamp ban is a law that works against good public health policy. As a doctor who cares predominantly for people who are released from prison, I see the damaging consequences of this ban on food stamps. I have seen patients of mine with diabetes go without food and end up hospitalized with low blood sugar, and still others with HIV skip their antiretrovirals because they don’t have food to take with their pills.  Not having access to food is associated with bad health outcomes including worsening diabetes, HIV, depression. Young children face anemia, diabetes, and depression.

Women with children are especially affected. It’s estimated that 70,000 women and their children are banned from obtaining food stamps. This means mothers who are simply trying to feed themselves and their children, and who are trying to get back on their feet after serving their time, are banned from receiving the money to pay for the basics necessary to survive.  Meanwhile, 46 million others, including college graduates and PhDs with far more resources, can receive food aid.

No other criminal conviction results in such a ban—not arson, not rape, not even murder.

Carla was arrested at 20 for selling marijuana.  At the time, she had also been making money working for her “boyfriend” as a sex worker.  Her boyfriend was also arrested for robbery.  He could qualify for food stamps upon release. But not Carla. She continues to pay for selling marijuana— a drug which two states have now voted to legalize outright—and the price is health risks for herself and for her children. 

CONTINUE READING….PAGE 2…