medical marijuana

Medical Marijuana bill clears another hurdle

Feb 21, 2017
Courtesy ND Legislature

The state Senate has approved amendments to the Medical Marijuana bill.

As originally proposed, the hill would not have allowed smoking marijuana. But the amendments spell out the idea that with a doctor’s permission, a patient can smoke from the leaves and flowers of the plant.

"Leafs and flowers? That's pot," said Sen. Oley Larson (R-Minot). "That's not medicine."

Larson had proposed allowing people to smoke “hash resin” instead.

Medical marijuana supporters are not happy with a bill that essentially re-writes the initiated measure passed by voters in November.

Legislative leaders had said the wording of that measure did not conform to North Dakota law – and changes were needed to bring it into compliance. They first passed a bill to delay the implementation until a new set of regulations could be drafted.

"On (January) 16th, it was portrayed as a housekeeping measure," said Anita Morgan of Fargo, one of the sponsors of the initiated measure. "I think it has turned into an estate sale."

Senate passes Medical Marijuana delay

Jan 18, 2017

The state Senate has unanimously passed a bill delaying the implementation of medical marijuana.

Voters approved Measure 5 in the November election. But since it was approved, the state Health Department has been trying to write rules. The department says it needs more time.

The bill is sponsored by the Republican and Democratic floor leaders in both houses.

Delaying implementation of medical marijuana

Jan 16, 2017
Dave Thompson / Prairie Public

Legislative leaders say the state Health Department needs more time to set up rules and regulations on medical marijuana.

Voters in November passed a measure legalizing the use of medical cannabis.

The bill would delay implementation of the medical marijuana law until the end of July. It was supposed to take effect 30 days after the November election, which would have been Dec. 8th, 2016.

Dave Thompson / Prairie Public

Representatives of the state Health Department say if the medical marijuana measure passes, it would be costly to administer and enforce.

It’s measure 5 on the November ballot.

Deputy state Health Officer Arvy Smith told the Legislative Management Committee – start-up costs would be about $1.4 million dollars. That would be for the remainder of the current two year budget period, which expires next June 30th. As for the upcoming two years,

Ricksha Across America

Jul 19, 2016
J.Corley / Prairie Public

An activist whose home is a ricksha has been riding across North Dakota to advocate for the legalization of medical marijuana. Ras Ible says he is on his way to Washington D.C. to protest federal prohibition so veterans can legally access the drug…..

“...The VA should be dispensing this stuff from our medical dispensaries instead of pills and narcotics because none of these veterans or anybody has died from medical marijuana”

Dave Thompson / Prairie Public

Supporters of an initiated measure to legalize marijuana for medicinal purposes have collected petitions with more than 17,600 signatures to get the measure on the November ballot.

The group “North Dakota Compassionate Care” has submitted the signatures to the Secretary of State’s office for review.

The group's chairman, Rilie Ray Morgan of Fargo, said if the measure is approved for the ballot, his group needs to get to work on an educational campaign.

House turns down study of medical marijuana

Mar 17, 2015

The House has voted down a proposal to study medical marijuana.

This follows the defeat of a bill that would have allowed the medicinal use of marijuana. The measure’s opponents say there is testing going on at the federal level – and the state needs to wait until those tests are conclusive. But supporters say this is a chance for the Legislature to take some ownership of the issue.

Rep. Pam Anderson (D-Fargo) told her House colleagues that this issue could very well lead to an initiated measure.

Medical marijuana bill dies in the House

Feb 19, 2015

A bill to allow the medical use of marijuana has died in the North Dakota House.

Supporters say medical marijuana would be used in cases of chronic pain and severe illness. Rep. Pamela Anderson (D-Fargo) authored the bill. She says she introduced it on behalf of a constituent, who she says tried everything he could to ease the pain – and nothing worked.

"This is not a drug issue," said Anderson. "It's quality of life for the citizens of North Dakota."

North Dakota Group Pushes for Medical Marijuana

Aug 6, 2012

A group hopes to let North Dakotans be able to use marijuana for medical purposes.

North Dakotans for Compassionate Care has 20,000 signatures which allows its measure to be on the November ballot. Dave Schwartz is the campaign director for the organization.