Published on September 16th, 2015 | by News Feed
20 Years Later California Passes Medical Marijuana Regulations
In 1996 California became the first state in the country to enact a law that allowed medical marijuana to be used by certain patients. While that law proved to be a trendsetter it was filled with issues. The largest seemed to be the inherent laziness of the politicians to actually pass any rules that governed the use of the plant.
While the battle has been raging for almost 20 years both sides of the aisle have been forced to finally sit down and hammer out the regulations and rules that govern the use of medical marijuana. However there were concessions on both sides and at the end of the day, Senate bill 643 was passed along with Assembly Bills 246 and 266.
While many will be happy that this closes the book on the 1996 passing of the medical marijuana laws they will be less than surprised to learn that the state created yet another government agency that is going to “oversee” the medical marijuana community. All marijuana businesses are now going to be forced to purchase a license from the state as well as the local town they live in. There will also be a new Medical Marijuana Regulatory Agency that will serve as a watchdog for every single aspect of the marijuana trade.
“This is the result of an unprecedented stakeholder process in which my colleagues and I brought everyone to the table, from medical marijuana businesses to law enforcement and patient advocates, to create a comprehensive regulatory framework for the state’s billion dollar medical marijuana industry,” said State Assemblyman Rob Bonta.
California passed the medical marijuana bill in 1996 and instantly set the country on fire with discussion. Many could not believe that the state would allow such a mind-altering drug. However time has proven that the state was correct and that they were, indeed, trendsetters in the world of marijuana. Since then the battles have been hard fought when it came to finalizing any details of how the bill would be enacted or regulated.
Apparently the only reason the rules were agreed to this time was because the state leaders have a real fear that recreational marijuana is going to be voted in as law in 2016. This fear forced the legislators to cross the aisle and get to work.
The real hang up this time came in the form of labor unions and police officer unions. Both groups involved wanted something different and each had to be willing to cave in some area or another. Even after the unions were able to find common ground the legislator and the governor had to do the same thing.
Now that California has finalized laws for medical marijuana, do you think other states will soon follow in their footsteps?