Article by TG Branfalt Jr., Ganjapreneur
Iowa’s limited medical cannabis program is set to expire in July, but advocates, along with some state lawmakers, see the sunset as an opportunity to rewrite a comprehensive set of rules for the program when the session reconvenes in January, the Des Moines Registerreports. Under the current law, passed in 2014, medical cannabis oil use is allowed in the state but only for the treatment of epilepsy; however, a separate law bars the manufacture and distribution of the oil, essentially making it illegal for patients to obtain it.
Republican State Rep. Clel Baudler plans on introducing a bill that would permit both production and distribution of cannabis oil in the state, which has previously been opposed by other members of his party.
“Last year there was a hodgepodge of panic, if you will, in my caucus to do something. Well if we’re going to do something, let’s do something smart,” Baudler said in the report. “If these people want it grown in Iowa, processed in Iowa, I think we can make that happen.”
A bill by Republican Rep. Peter Cownie attempted to address this issue during last session, introducing a bill that would have allowed cannabis oil production and distribution in Iowa. That bill was blocked by House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Tom Sands, a Republican.
But with the expiration date closing in, Democratic Rep. John Forbes said the legislature is now “under the gun.”