dannel malloy

Connecticut, Maine: New Laws Permit Medical Marijuana In Hospitals

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By Derrick Stanley
Hemp News

New laws in Connecticut and Maine allow the use of medical marijuana formulations by patients who are hospitalized.

This week, Connecticut Governor Dannel Malloy signed legislation, HB 5450, to protect nurses who administer medical marijuana to qualified patients in hospitals from any civil, criminal, or disciplinary action. Other provisions in the bill would expand access to medical marijuana to those under the age of 18 and seek to establish a state-sponsored research program.

Maine's Governor Paul LePage signed LD 426 into law recently which also protects hospital administrators and staff from civil or criminal liability if they permit qualified to use non-inhaled forms of medical marijuana in hospitals. The patients would not necessarily be provided or administered medical marijuana under the law, but could receive marijuana products from a third party.

Connecticut and Maine are the first states to specifically provide immunity to hospitals that permit patients to use medical marijuana.

Connecticut Lawmakers Push To Legalize Pot

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By Derrick Stanley
Hemp News

Lawmakers in Connecticut yesterday filed a bill which would legalize recreational marijuana use by adults over 21. The proposed bill would open the door for Connecticut to join several other New England states considering full-scale legalization this year.

Massachusetts voters will have the opportunity in November to vote for cannabis legalization. Vermont's Gov. Peter Schumlin introduced a legalization plan in a recent address. Lawmakers in Rhode Island are proposing a bill in their state this year for legalization.

Colorado, Washington, Alaska, Oregon and Washington, DC have already succeeded in legalizing recreational marijuana through ballot measures.

Quoted in the Hartford Courant, Rep. Juan Candelaria, a Democrat, said "I'm going to be pushing very hard. I'm going to be engaging my leadership in conversation to at least allow a public hearing."

Candelaria was joined by nine other Democratic lawmakers from across the state in filing the bill. Some conditions included in the bill would require child-safe packaging and a ban on public use.

Gov. Dannel P. Malloy, a Democrat, signed a bill to allow physicians to prescribe medical marijuana in 2012, but was not so receptive to the proposed new bill. "That's as far as I'm comfortable going," he said yesterday when asked about it. "Malloy said. "But certainly every member of the legislature is entitled to their own opinion. We'll see what happens.
It's not my proposal."

Connecticut: Court Ruling Clears Way For Past Marijuana Convictions To Be Erased


By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

Thousands of state residents who have been busted for marijuana possession in the past now have the right to get their convictions erased after the Connecticut Supreme Court on Monday ruled that the violation had been downgraded to the same level as a parking ticket.

The unanimous 7-0 ruling came in the case of Nicholas Menditto, 31, a former resident of Manchester and Boston who had asked for his convictions to be overturned after the Connecticut Legislature in 2011 decriminalized possession of small amounts of cannabis, reports Dave Collins at the Associated Press.

"It's a topic multiple states will have to be facing," said Menditto's attorney, Aaron Romano. "Because marijuana is being decriminalized across the United States, this issue needs to be addressed."

Last year, Colorado's second-highest court ruled that some people who have been convicted of possessing small amounts of pot can ask for those convictions to be thrown out under the state law which legalized recreational marijuana.

In 2011, Connecticut Gov. Dannel P. Malloy and the Legislature changed possession of less than half an ounce of cannabis from a misdemeanor, with potential jail time, to a violation with a $150 fine for a first offense and $200 to $500 for subsequent offenses.

Connecticut: Medical Marijuana Legal For Two Years, But Still None For Sale


By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

Connecticut's law allowing the sale of marijuana for medical purposes was passed two years ago, but there is still no medicinal cannabis legally for sale in the state.

Prospective owners have found it challenging to locate dispensary locations without raising the ire of towns and cities, reports Joseph Berger at The New York Times. Fairfield and West Haven have zoned such businesses out of existence; other towns, including Madison, New Canaan and Westport, have moratoriums in place while their zoning rules are reviewed. This month, the Bridgeport zoning board turned down a licensee.

Democratic Gov. Dannel P. Malloy signed the law in May 2012; it requires that pharmacists dispense medical marijuana, and limits the list of qualifying ailments. Four growers and six dispensaries have been licensed so far.

But those who want to open dispensaries are running into uninformed opposition from superstitious residents who think having a marijuana dispensary nearby would somehow "hurt their children," invite black markets (as if they aren't already there), or lower property values (which is certainly a backwards way of looking at potential conomic growth, if you ask us).

Connecticut: Four Companies Licensed To Grow; Medical Marijuana Sales By Summer


By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

Four companies in Connecticut have been licensed to be the first to legally produce medical marijuana in the state. Patients have been allowed to possess marijuana since October 2012, but patients aren't allowed to grow their own, and sales are illegal until dispensaries open later this year.

The grow operations will be located in Simsbury, Portland, West Haven and Watertown, reports Bill Weir at The Hartford Courant.

The announcement was made on Tuesday at a warehouse in New Haven where Advanced Grow Labs, one of the four licensed companies, will operate. The other three companies licensed to grow are Connecticut Pharmaceutical Solution LLC in Portland, Curaleaf LLC in Simsbury and Theraplant LLC in Watertown.

All four companies said they expect to have marijuana ready for sale this summer.

"We're making progress folks -- we're going to bring relief to people here," said Governor Dannel P. Malloy, who attended Tuesday's announcement. "This law allows a patient and a doctor to decide what is in a patient's interest.

"For years, I have heard stories from people considering the benefits of medical marijuana and desperately want to follow the law and desperately who want to follow the doctor's advice and who desperately want relief from the pain from the disease they are suffering from," Malloy said.

Connecticut: Public Comments Being Accepted on Medical Marijuana Rules

There is a truth that must be heard!By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

Starting on Monday, April 22, public comments are being accepted on regulations that would govern how medical marijuana is grown and distributed in Connecticut.

Seventy pages of "stringent" draft regulations have been prepared by the Connecticut Department of Consumer Protection, reports Neil McNamara at the New Haven Register. The regulations are intended to mirror the controls over the distribution of such pharmaceuticals as Oxycontin.

The state's medical marijuana bill was signed into law last May by Governor Dannel P. Malloy; in October, the state began accepting patient applications for medical marijuana licenses. The state has, so far, gotten about 400 applications and has issued about 300 licenses, according to Consumer Protection Commissioner Phillip Rubenstein.

The department drafted the regulations in consultation with drug policy experts and legal experts, according to Rubenstein, and took into account regulations used in other medical marijuana states. They decided to follow a "stringent" model of regulation, similar to how prescription drugs are controlled, he said.

"The intent was really to use a controlled pharmaceutical substance model very directly," Rubenstein said. "I think we're the only state that has used that model as completely as we have."

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