PLEASE PLAN TO JOIN ACTIVISTS, CITIZENS, REPRESENTATIVES AND OTHERS AT THE 2020 CANNABIS RALLY AT THE ROTUNDA, THIS WEDESDAY, MARCH 11TH, FROM 12:30PM UNTIL 2:00PM.
LOCATED AT 700 CAPITAL AVENUE, FRANKFORT, KY 40601.
Above: HB 136 primary cosponsor Rep. Jason Nemes, R-Louisville, presenting the medical marijuana legislation for a floor vote.
For Immediate Release
February 20, 2020
Medical marijuana bill advances in KY General Assembly
FRANKFORT— For the first time in Kentucky history, a bill to legalize medical marijuana came to a vote on the floor of the Kentucky House. Apparently the first time was a charm.
Members of the House voted 65-30 to approve the legalization of medical marijuana under House Bill 136, along with eight floor amendments to the bill. The measure now goes to the Senate for its consideration.
“HB 136 when it is passed, which I hope that it is, will be the tightest medical marijuana bill in the country,” said Rep. Jason Nemes, R-Louisville, who shares primary sponsorship of the measure with Rep. John Sims Jr., D-Flemingsburg.
Nemes said that he and Sims have spent years meeting with stakeholders to ensure that the legislation addresses their concerns.
“We’ve met with stakeholders from law enforcement, constituents, regular folks … patients, physicians, chiropractors. I mean, you name it, we’ve been there,” he said.
The bill as passed by the House would extensively clarify state policies for cultivation, processing, sale, distribution, and use of medical marijuana. Licensing of cannabis dispensaries is covered, as is maintenance of a cardholder registry for cannabis users.
Smoking of medical marijuana would be prohibited under HB 136. The bill instead would allow the drug to be dispensed as “edibles” such as gummies, oils, or similar products. Customers would be limited to a month’s supply at one time.
Keeping with the sponsors’ commitment to make HB 136 a public health bill and not a revenue maker, Nemes said excise taxes and all other revenue created by the bill would go to regulation of the program and nothing else. Additionally, local governments would have the last say in whether medical marijuana businesses operate within their jurisdiction.
Among those House members voting against the proposal was former Kentucky State Trooper and current pastor Rep. Chris Fugate, R-Chavies. He cited the fact that marijuana remains a federally controlled substance that isn’t regulated by the Food and Drug Administration as a reason for his vote.
“Marijuana, no matter how we look at it, is against federal law” and joins heroin, LSD, and ectasy as a Schedule I narcotic, said Fugate. It is also a “gateway drug,” he said, referring to drugs that are believed by some to lead to abuse of more dangerous drugs later on.
Voting is support of the bill was Rep. Robert Goforth, R-East Bernstadt. The licensed pharmacist said he supports the bill on behalf of individuals like his adult brother diagnosed years ago with cerebral palsy.
Goforth said he sees his brother suffer on a regular basis from “adverse side effects” caused by FDA-approved anticonvulsants and other drugs.
“If I can give him a little bit of relief from the FDA-approved medication that has caused those adverse side effects for him, to control those conditions, I’m going to do it. I have to do it,” he said.
As of today, January 22, 2020, Senator Perry Clark has introduced SB 105, “AN ACT relating to the regulation of cannabis and making an appropriation therefor”, as is posted on the Kentucky Legislature site.
To date, this is the best Bill which I have seen, as it supports all facets of Cannabis, including medicinal use for those under 21 if needed.
Here is a paragraph of the Bill:
Create various new sections of KRS Chapter 245 to define terms; to allow for possession, growth, use, processing, purchasing, transfer, and consumption of cannabis; to establish limits for transfer; to allow for purchasing and manufacture of cannabis accessories; to authorize activities and operation of retail stores, consumption establishments, cultivation facilities, cannabis testing facilities, and product manufacturing facilities; to establish possession limits; to prohibit smoking cannabis in public and to establish a fine for violation; to prohibit operation of motor vehicles while consuming cannabis and to specify that existing intoxication laws are not superseded; to prohibit state or local resources to be used to investigate violations of federal Controlled Substances Act that conflict with this KRS Chapter 245; to specify that an employer is not required to allow consumption, workplace intoxication, possession, or transfer of cannabis; to prohibit individuals under the age of 21 from entering cannabis establishments, purchasing, using, or misrepresenting their age and to provide for exceptions; to establish provisions for palliative or therapeutic use of cannabis by persons under the age of 21 LINK
Please view the entire Bill!
In a related article from 2013…
THE TIMELINE OF KENTUCKY MARIJUANA BILLS 2013-2019
Tuesday, February 19, 2019 – introduced in House
Moser , Kimberly Poore
A CONCURRENT RESOLUTION establishing the Medicinal Marijuana Task Force.
Tuesday, January 8, 2019 – introduced in Senate
AN ACT relating to the regulation of cannabis and making an appropriation therefor. (Adult recreational use)
Wednesday, January 9, 2019 – introduced in House
AN ACT relating to medicinal marijuana and making an appropriation therefor.
Friday, January 11, 2019 – introduced in Senate
Create a new section of KRS Chapter 218A to make the penalty for possession of a personal use quantity of marijuana a prepayable non-criminal fine;
Tuesday, February 12, 2019 – introduced in Senate
AN ACT relating to medicinal marijuana and making an appropriation therefor.
Tuesday, January 8, 2019 – introduced in House
CONCURRENT RESOLUTION calling for the expediting of research regarding the safety and efficacy of the use of marijuana for medical purposes.
01/17/18 introduced in Senate
D. Seum, P. Clark
AN ACT relating to the regulation of cannabis. (Adult Use)
This past week in Frankfort, State Senator Dan Seum of Fairdale, Ky. — who represents Bullitt County and a portion of Jefferson County in Senate District 38 — introduced Senate Bill 80, which seeks to allow full and regulated cannabis use in Kentucky.
01/10/18 introduced in House
J. Sims Jr, G. Brown Jr, T. Burch, M. Cantrell, J. Donohue, K. Flood, A. Gentry, J. Gooch Jr., D. Graham, J. Greer, C. Harris, A. Hatton, T. Herald, J. Jenkins, M. Marzian, J. Miller, C. Morgan, R. Nelson, J. Nemes, R. Palumbo, R. Rand, D. Schamore, A. Scott, S. Wells, S. Westrom
AN ACT relating to medical cannabis and making an appropriation therefor.
A bill to legalize medical marijuana in Kentucky was shelved Wednesday after it ran into strong opposition from law enforcement officials during a round of testimony before a legislative panel.
A day after hearing from medical marijuana supporters, the panel took comments from law enforcement officials and a Warren County prosecutor. They warned that legalization could exacerbate Kentucky’s drug addiction woes. LINK
03/01/18 introduced in Senate
M. McGarvey, R. Thomas
AN ACT relating to medical marijuana
01/30/18 introduced in Senate
S. West, D. Seum, P. Clark, C. Embry Jr., D. Harper Angel, M. McGarvey, G. Neal, R. Thomas
AN ACT relating to medical cannabis.
Dec 09, 2016 – Prefiled by the sponsor(s).
Jan 03, 2017 – introduced in Senate
AN ACT relating to the regulation of cannabis and making an appropriation therefor.
Establish KRS Chapter 245 to regulate the cultivation, testing, processing, taxing, and sale of cannabis to persons aged 21 years and older; create, amend, and repeal various sections to conform.
Dec 06, 2016 – Prefiled by the sponsor(s).
Jan 03, 2017 – introduced in Senate
P. Clark, D. Harper Angel, S. West
AN ACT relating to medical cannabis.
02/16/17 introduced in House
J. Sims Jr, A. Gentry, D. Johnson, A. Simpson
Create a new section of KRS Chapter 311 to allow physicians to recommend use of cannabis; hold physicians harmless for making the recommendation.
SB 243 (BR 1469)
02/16/17 introduced in Senate
*March 2, 2016
On Wednesday, March 2, Sen. Perry Clark of Louisville introduced two new Bills, one for Hemp and another for medical marijuana.
Senate Bill 262 is AN ACT relating to industrial hemp.
Senate Bill 263 is AN ACT relating to medical cannabis.
*March 1, 2016
HB 584 AN ACT relating to the medical use of marijuana in Kentucky
Introduced March 1, 2016
*January 6, 2016
Introduced on January 6, 2016
*February 5, 2015
Introduced on February 5, 2015
AN ACT relating to crimes and punishments.
Amend and create various KRS sections to convert certain misdemeanors to pre-payable violations and set fines.
Feb 5-Introduced in House
Introduced on January 9, 2015
Amend KRS 218A.1422 to make the possession of two ounces of marijuana or less a violation punishable by a maximum fine of $75; amend KRS 218A.1423 to make cultivation of five marijuana plants or less a Class B misdemeanor; name the Act the Kentucky Cannabis Freedom Act.
Jan 9-Introduced in Senate
Feb 3-to Judiciary (S)
Introduced on January 6, 2015
House Speaker Greg Stumbo’s medical marijuana bill wasn’t going to pass this year anyway, he said Thursday, so his House Bill 3 is likely dead after no vote was taken in a committee hearing.
2014-02-05 Senate introduced in Senate
2014-04-10 Senate signed by Governor (Acts, ch. 112)
Legislators did make an effort to help some seriously ill patients who could benefit from cannabidiol (“CBD,” a non-psychoactive component of marijuana). On Thursday, April 10, Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear signed into law a proposal that is intended to allow patients to use CBD if directed to do so by a physician.
Medical Marijuana Bill Kentucky 2015, SB 43/LM/CI (BR 287)
Introduced on January 7, 2014
Jan 7-introduced in Senate
Jan 13-to Licensing, Occupations, & Administrative Regulations (S)
*January 8, 2013
Senator Perry Clark submitted SB11 to the judiciary committee last week
Introduced on January 8, 2013
Greetings Well the bill has been submitted and now it’s our turn. Senator Perry Clark submitted SB11 to the judiciary committee last week. http://www.mpp.org/states/kentucky/ It is one of the most aggressive legalization bills to date and we are asking all supporters to get on board to help us push this bill through. You can see a summary of the bill here: http://kentuckyveteransformedicalmarijua.blogspot.com/2012/09/gatewood-galbraith-memorial-medical.html
In the coming days I will be sending out information on what needs to be done. We will also be sending out another petition so be sure to sign it as we will be using it to further the legislation along. This is a short session folks but I know that working together we can get this done. I would like to hear from any veterans we might have, especially if you belong to the VFW. There is big news concerning the VA.
Folks I am excited about our chances. I’m hearing more and more positive feedback from legislators every day. We are getting closer to making this bill a reality. If you have any questions you may contact me here at email@example.com United, We Stand! Ron Moore Kentucky Veterans for Medical Marijuana www.kentuckyveteransformedicalmarijuana.net Find your legislator at this link: http://www.lrc.ky.gov/whoswho/email.htm
or Call the Toll-Free Legislative Message Line at 1-800-372-7181 to leave a message.
Legislation introduced to legalize marijuana in Kentucky
FRANKFORT, KY (WAVE) – Kentucky Sen. Perry B. Clark introduced legislation that would make marijuana a legal drug for doctors to prescribe.
Thursday afternoon, the Louisville Democrat held a news conference at the Capitol Annex in Frankfort to introduce the Gatewood Galbraith Memorial Medical Marijuana Act. Clark was joined at the news conference by Galbraith’s daughter, Molly Galbraith, and other supporters of medical marijuana.
They said medical research has proven it has many benefits for everything from Parkinson’s disease to tumor regression, prostate cancer, nausea and pain.
Gatewood Galbraith, a perennial candidate for governor of Kentucky and an outspoken proponent of the legalization of marijuana, privacy rights and other civil liberties died at his home near Lexington in January at the age of 64.
Twenty states have approved some type of medical marijuana usage and several other states have similar legislation pending.
Copyright 2012 WAVE News. All rights reserved.
Actively, since 2012, the State of Kentucky has had various Cannabis Bills in the Legislature. Before that we had Gatewood Galbraith in all of his glory, who tried, unsuccessfully through a number of elections to help turn this State around. Unfortunately most of the people who would have voted for him didn’t have voting rights in Kentucky and the ones who did voted for their own pockets.
The Gatewood Galbraith Medical Marijuana Memorial Act went absolutely nowhere in 2012 after his death.
There has only been one Cannabis related medicine that has been approved via Kentucky Legislature, and that was when SB 124 was signed by the Governor in 2014.
Legislators did make an effort to help some seriously ill patients who could benefit from cannabidiol (“CBD,” a non-psychoactive component of marijuana). On Thursday, April 10, Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear signed into law a proposal that is intended to allow patients to use CBD if directed to do so by a physician. LINK
Many Kentucky Citizens, Patients, Parents, Students, Veterans and others have spent countless travel hours, time at the State Capitol and expense dollars to try to talk their way into getting the Senators, Representatives and the Governor to give them some legal relief. Some little bit of understanding and compassion that they could latch onto for hope. But it never comes.
There have been a few Senators and Representatives that have stepped up and did their part, and then some, when they filed Bills that should have received much more attention than they did in Frankfort.
Today, an article was published on Kentucky.Com that reiterated Gov. Matt Bevins stance on adult use Cannabis.
“There’s not a chance that I would sign a legalization of recreational marijuana,” he said.
However, he also pointed out that he believes that “There is incredible medicinal value associated with cannabis,” as he spoke candidly about the loss of his teenage Nephew to Cancer. He even became emotional about the subject…just in time for the upcoming Election this year in Kentucky, where he will once again make promises he does not intend to keep – at least in my opinion.
In Gov. Bevin’s State of the Commonwealth address he made no mention of Cannabis, neither medical or otherwise. However, in the Kentucky Chamber Day Dinner in January he did express his views on medical marijuana. According to what he said he leans toward a very narrow and strict medical marijuana law if any, and definitely not a pro-recreational or adult use legalization.
So rather than to take the Bull by the horns and legalize it into a regulated commodity that everyone would buy and agree to let it be controlled by the Government, just as long as they could get some of it for themselves, the Governor chooses to stand firm, like a Bull, and deny any type of adult use legalization and as well hasn’t approved any kind of medicinal marijuana either with the exception of the CBD bill. I’m not sure how to take that because you would think that the Government would be all about control of the masses through legalization, however, in this case at least, they choose to just flat out deny us. Period. Even though the people are begging to be regulated!
The black market will continue to thrive in Kentucky so long as this commodity goes unregulated in the open market.
At this point in time, my personal favorite is SB 82, Sponsored by Jimmy Higdon, it is a decriminalization Bill which asks to make personal possession a pre-payable non-criminal fine. It applies to everyone living in the State. It would be easily implemented. It is a starting point – although we shouldn’t still be at the “starting point”.
Kentucky is mastering hemp farming and we should be mastering medical and adult use marijuana as well.
I would prefer to have seen a repeal on Cannabis prohibition at the Federal level before now – but it hasn’t happened yet and States DO have rights.
I could learn to live with the medical marijuana initiative if it were passed with the best of intentions for all people and patients in this State. But I cannot see that happening at least in the short term. It could take years to organize an operational program of that magnitude and intense oversight. Where are the people who will manage and work these establishments going to come from? We cannot even get enough nurses and clerical workers here fast enough.
Unfortunately for us, it isn’t just about marijuana anymore!
There are a number of other issues in Kentucky which deserve our attention as well.
*Severe drug abuse issues such as heroin.
* Women’s abortion rights.
*Water access and purification.
*Healthcare and access to appropriate pain management.
*Unlicensed concealed carry.
*Human trafficking and child abuse.
The list goes on and on.
Kentucky has been a mecca for marijuana for 100 years – just go ahead and legalize it and tax the recreational use and put that money toward more important issues. Everybody already uses Cannabis in Kentucky anyway so why pretend that you can stop it?
Pass both the medical Cannabis, recreational, AND the decrim bill. All avenues will be covered in that the decrim will pick up and give a little relief while we wait implementation of the recreational and medical bills.
People all over the U.S. need some relief and hope. Especially in Kentucky.
@Gov. Matt Bevin, show us what you are really made of!
Rainbow Farm was located in Vandalia, Michigan & was a cannabis friendly community. They had great concerts & speakers. The government came in later & killed the owners & stole the farm from the legal birth right of the son, Robert, 1 week before 9-11 (September 3rd & 4th,2001). Tom Crosslin & Rollie Rolhm were the owners & each one of them were systematically gunned down & tortured after being out numbered 300 to 1. In order to stop a memorial day concert, that was to start a signature campaign to legalize cannabis in the state of Michigan.
The Country as a whole has come a long way since the incident above in 2001, but it still has a very long way to go. We have 11 “legalized States” and 33 “medicinal States” to date according to NORML. More than the majority of Americans believe it should be made “lawful”. Many sick people including children are suffering needlessly and we have the ability to help rectify the situation.
We should not still have to be going to the Capital in Frankfort to beg for something that we should have had in Kentucky more than seven years ago. In fact, it never should have been “unlawful” to possess in the first place.
Gatewood Galbraith, “The greatest Governor that Kentucky never had”, spoke to this issue many times and had he been elected we would not still be in this same fight today. He said, “You have got to get political. Because if you don’t get political then I’m gonna die in the streets!”
The number of people who are dying in the streets has exponentially increased in the past 5+ years in earnest. The crisis was started by the Government and their Pharmaceutical cronies who promoted highly addictive opioid drugs for daily use to patients who were suffering and they bit the bait. After everyone was sufficiently addicted to the pharmaceuticals the Government claimed an “opioid crisis” and immediately withdrew these needed medications by way of intimidating the Physicians and forced drug testing to the point that the Medical Establishment could no longer take the chance of losing their Practice’s, and so they immediately withdrew needed medicines from Patients who legitimately needed them, as well as other’s who had become addicted for other reasons – and there are many reasons… This in turn caused people to literally die in the streets due to a dire need to medicate and the ample supply in the streets of much more potent and deadly drugs than what the Physicians had been prescribing them to begin with.
Some of us were strong enough and smart enough to turn to Cannabis which saved our lives, even though it is illegal. A lot of us have lost close friends and family members to this ‘war on drugs’. Many of us grieve daily because of it.
There have been Senators, Representatives and Citizen Activists, working hard to see Cannabis regulation and lawfulness is passed in the very State that in WWII the Government pleaded with people to grow Hemp for their War efforts. The people responded to their requests in a time of need. However, the Government turns their heads the other way when the Citizens request that they help them establish a safe and lawful way to use Cannabis, medically and otherwise. Not only would this help the multitudes of patients who direly need this medication, it would also establish a lawful product that can be taxed and used for the greater good of the State we reside in, including new businesses and employment. As a result, even those who chose not to partake in Cannabis would benefit from the legalization and taxation of the product – much like alcohol – with much less lawlessness than alcohol promotes…
It would establish a lawful alternative to Alcohol and Tobacco and other illicit drugs, such as street level opioids which are destroying families and responsible for unending deaths even as we speak. Yet, to date, our Kentucky Government has refused to act upon this issue.
Why has Kentucky Government taken such a path in governing of the people?
For a more in-depth read on why and how our Country has fell into the hands of the NWO you can view this LINK. “The Elkhorn Manifesto” is an archived page of the Kentucky Marijuana Party, written in 1996 by R. William Davis, and collaborated with Gatewood Galbraith.
Here we are, once again, in the year of Our Lord, 2019, begging for our leaders to hear our plea’s. And once again, they will try to ignore us!
As far as I am concerned, the lawfulness of Cannabis should first have been rightfully returned to the people through REPEAL of Federal Treaties and Statutes which made it unlawful to begin with. Possibly as far back as the 1914 Harrison Narcotics Tax Act. However, the situation has been taken into the hands of the individual States and their “States Rights” because the Federal Government refused to stand up for the rights of our people. Instead they have enlisted a “New World Order” to do their dirty work which seeks to contain society at large – world wide control of the masses, control of all plants, food, medicines, WATER, etc., to be placed under strict guidelines to which we must abide by the rules or suffer the consequences.
We have become damned if we do submit to the law and damned if we do not follow it as well.
There is research already out there and patients are being helped and in some cases literally saved from an early death by using Cannabis. Many people have been saved from addiction by using Cannabis.
We cannot wait another year to change the Cannabis Statutes in Kentucky. We need it now. We needed it 20 years ago.
There are currently two Bills in Kentucky Legislature – one in Senate and one in the House. Both bills should be passed and this is my reasoning for this:
SB 80 / Dan Malano Seum / Establishes the “Department of Cannabis Control” which will oversee lawful consumption of Cannabis in Kentucky by adults 21 and over. This Bill gives limited and controlled freedom back to the people in that it does allow for growing on our own property and consumption as well as sets the stage for business to be lawful throughout Kentucky. This legislation could be enacted fairly quickly and jumpstart the economy here. It is imperative that we implement this legislation this year if we seek to make our State livable again.
HB 136 / Establishes a very strict “Medical Cannabis” bill for bonified Patients. Because of the nature of illnesses and the fact that many Children could be served by this Bill it is imperative that “medicinal Cannabis” be made available in Kentucky to those who are in need, medically, whether they be adult or child. Many people who are not familiar with Cannabis and it’s use would serve to be protected as patients by this medical legislation. The problem is that with the measures necessary to comply with the Bill as it is written it would most certainly be a slow process to set up across the State and reach all patients equally. However, we should proceed immediately on this Act as well.
Additionally, a drug-free workplace Bill for the use of legal Hemp CBD products, currently sold on the open market:
SB 83 / Perry B. Clark “Shauna’s Law” Relating to a drug free workplace / Seeks to mandate an appeals process for those employer’s who enforce drug-testing upon their employee’s which will address those persons who have been found in violation of the drug-free workplace policy by testing positive on random drug screens for legal Hemp products such as CBD. It would set aside that violation if proven that a legal product had been used. This Bill must be passed in order to preserve the integrity of the Hemp market as well as employee’s rights.
IF our Legislator’s and Governor do not seek to enact the Bill’s which we as a People have requested for our health and well-being in general, then the political system of the Commonwealth of Kentucky needs to be immediately and completely changed and replaced. This would also include other issues of great importance in Kentucky such as the Pension Crisis.
The corruption in Kentucky runs far and wide and seeks to be ended this year. The time is now for change…not later. We cannot wait another year to be lawful!
I want to thank the non informed for the Cannabis Act… you’re insistence that legal is best is the gift earned.
I spoke for years about repeal vs legal…
— now I’m done & another wayseer abandons the masses due to tiredness
Either you want your freedoms restored, or you don’t. Most people “say” they want their freedoms restored, even as they deliberately stab themselves–and everyone else–in the back by begging for more statutory enslavement, and REFUSING to end the problem, somehow “believing” that not ending the problem, and always making it worse, is somehow going to end the problem.
So let’s look at the BULLSHIT NON-OPTIONS that people “believe” means they get their freedoms back, as opposed to the REPEAL of the statutes, which actually WOULD end the persecution once and for all:
1) “Decriminalization” is NOT repeal. It is NOT freedom. But some of you still fight for this, instead of to end prohibition.
2) “Legalization” is what we already have. It is NOT freedom. But some of you still fight for this, instead of to end prohibition.
3) “Re-legalization” is two letters prepended to what we already have. It is NOT freedom. But some of you still fight for this, instead of to end prohibition.
4) “Tax and regulate” will create more statutes, more regulations, more licenses, more fees, and create more problems and more “criminal charges.” It is NOT freedom. But some of you still fight for this, instead of to end prohibition.
5) “Regulate like _____” is just a different way to say “tax and regulate.” It is NOT freedom. But some of you still fight for this, instead of to end prohibition.
6) “Hemp ONLY!” It is NOT freedom. But some of you still fight for this, instead of to end prohibition.
7) “Medical ONLY!” It is NOT freedom. But some of you still fight for this, instead of to end prohibition.
8.) “Government control ONLY!” It is NOT freedom. But some of you still fight for this, instead of to end prohibition.
9) “Corporate control ONLY!” is financial in nature, and is ENTIRELY motivated by profiteering. It is NOT freedom. But some of you still fight for this, instead of to end prohibition.
10) “Government/corporate partnership control ONLY!” is actually OVERT FASCISM. It is NOT freedom. But some of you still fight for this, instead of to end prohibition.
There are several other “NOT REPEAL” options that people keep sucking up as “the ONLY solution”, even as they continue to “say” they want their freedom restored.
How can you ever hope to restore your own freedoms while you REFUSE to remove the statutes that took them away, and keep pushing for MORE STATUTES to further control your life in more intrusive ways?
How long are you going to keep paying for more of *your* own enslavement?
Are people EVER going to just wake up and see the truth that’s been staring them in the face for DECADES already?!?
FRANKFORT — The state House Judiciary Committee plans a vote Tuesday on authorizing the use of medical marijuana for treatment of chronic pain, side effects of chemotherapy and conditions like multiple sclerosis.
The committee heard testimony Monday on House Bill 166, sponsored by Rep. John Sims, R-Flemingsburg, which would allow doctors to qualify patients as appropriate consumers of medical cannabis for a variety of ailments. His bill is the product of a task force convened by Democratic Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes.
Sen. Stephen West, R-Paris, has filed a companion bill in the Senate — but the odds of passing either bill remain long in a conservative state and Republican majority legislature.
“This is not about marijuana,” Sims told the committee. “It’s about patients who have exhausted other remedies.”
Sims said 29 other states have legalized medical cannabis in some form which he said is effective in treatment of chronic pain, post traumatic stress, side effects of chemotherapy and other maladies.
Jaime Montalvo, a former emergency medical technician who has advocated for medical marijuana for several years, said the bill is based on what has worked best in some of the 29 states which already allow medical use of cannabis.
He cited multiple studies which also indicate an 11 percent decline in opioid prescriptions in those states and a 25 percent drop in the number of opioid overdoses.
The bill would allow doctors to qualify or certify patients to use the substance which would be grown, distributed and dispensed independently at each step in the process. By not prescribing or dispensing the drug, physicians won’t run afoul of federal prohibitions or endanger their licenses or certifications, Montalvo said.
A couple of years ago, the legislature authorized the use of CBD, an extract of marijuana and hemp which produces no psychotropic effect but has been found effective in reducing seizures. But the practical application of the law ran into road blocks because of federal laws and physicians and hospitals were hesitant to use the subject.
Montalvo said by having someone else dispense medical cannabis after a physician qualified a patient for its use would avoid that difficulty.
The legislation would allow local communities to “opt in,” Montalvo said, through a vote by the city or county legislative body. However, should those bodies vote not to allow the use of medical marijuana in their communities, citizens could petition for a referendum much as they can now for votes on alcohol sales.
Committee Chairman Rep. Joe Fischer, R-Ft. Thomas, said he plans a vote on the bill upon adjournment of the full House Tuesday.
The committee, however, approved one bill Monday and sent it to the full House: a measure to provide new Family Court Judges in the 28th Circuit which serves Lincoln, Pulaski and Rockcastle counties and the 54th which serves Boone and Kenton.
Supreme Court Justice John Minton last year asked lawmakers to redraw several circuits and districts because judges in some were handling far larger caseloads than some in other districts. The measure passed the Senate but stalled in the House — primarily because the bill re-allocated some existing judgeships from one area to another rather than creating new ones.
This year, Minton is asking that lawmakers at least address the two overworked circuits by creating the two new judgeships.
Then in 2022, a year in which all judges’ terms would expire before re-election, Minton said, an existing judgeship would be eliminated in Floyd County and another in western Kentucky by combining two districts. Those would offset the two new judgeships in the 28th and 54th circuits.
Judge Tom Smith, one of the Floyd County judges, testified in opposition to the measure, claiming the numbering system for cases is inconsistent and inaccurate and does not fairly reflect the actual case loads.
But the committee voted to send the bill to the full House.
The committee also heard graphic testimony by supporters and opponents of a bill sponsored by Rep. Addia Wuchner, R-Burlington, which would outlaw a type of abortion after 11 weeks.
The committee plans to vote on that bill when it meets again on Tuesday as well.
The following comment form is being circulated to give the Citizens of the Louisville Metro area of Kentucky a chance to voice their opinions concerning the ongoing medical marijuana discussions in the Legislature.
Please take a moment if you live in this area to fill out the form and let them hear your feelings on this subject.
Louisville Metro Council’s Health and Education Committee Medical Marijuana Town Hall Comment Form. The Louisville Metro Council values your input on a resolution under consideration regarding the legalization of Medical Marijuana.