mark madsen

Utah: Medical Marijuana Bill Fails In House Vote

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By Derrick Stanley
Hemp News

A Utah House of Representatives committee has ruled against Senate Bill 73, a bill that would have made limited medical marijuana legal for qualifying Utah patients.

Sen. Mark Madsen (R-Saratoga Springs), a co-sponsor of the bill defended it before the House Health and Human Services Committee Monday, but committee members voted against it 8-4, Fox13 News reported in Salt Lake City. The bill would have allowed access to some forms of medical marijuana, including oils, extracts, and edibles.

The committee considered and recommended Senate Bill 89, which would allow qualifying patients to use cannabidiol, an extract from marijuana with a low concentration of THC.

Utah: Medical Marijuana Passes Senate, Headed To House

Utah Senate Passes medical marijuana bill.

By Derrick Stanley
Hemp News

Voting on medical marijuana bill SB73, the Utah Senate voted 17-12 Thursday afternoon, approving a bill that would allow patients with specific illnesses to use marijuana edibles, extracts, and oils.

Proposed by Senator Mark Madsen, R-District 13, the bill clearly defines "cannabis", he said, and adds child-proofing standards, dosing guidelines, and other regulations.

The bill now must go before the Utah House for a vote. Supporters of the bill expect opposition in the House, but believe this positive vote could help them rally the 38 votes needed for the bill to get passed by the House.

Madsen had watered down the bill after opposition from the Senate and the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Another competing bill was passed earlier this week in the Senate in an 18-8 vote. SB89, a much more narrow bill, would would allow for a cannabis extract to treat certain medical conditions. Both bills now go to the House for consideration.

Utah: State Senate May Ask Congress To Reclassify Marijuana As Schedule II

UtahMarijuanaReform[MedicalJane]

By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

The Utah Senate could soon urge Congress to change the classification of marijuana, currently considered Schedule I under the Uniform Controlled Substances Act, to Schedule II, which could open the door for more medicinal cannabis research.

Senate Concurrent Resolution 11, sponsored by Sen. Brian Shiozawa (R-Salt Lake), would require the approval of the full Utah Legislature and Governor Gary Hebert, reports Jeremy Harris at KUTV.

Marijuana's current classification as Schedule I means that the U.S. federal government considers cannabis to be as dangerous as heroin and has "no currently accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse." Both cocaine and methamphetamine, incredibly, are considered Schedule II, thus less dangerous than marijuana, by the feds.

Shiozawa's resolution would urge Congress to reclassify marijuana to Schedule II. The downside to classifying cannabis as Schedule II, rather than de-scheduling it altogether, is that a Schedule II classification would effectively put marijuana under the tight control of Big Pharma.

"It's kind of gotten to be a mess because of inactivity on the executive branch and Congress," Shiozawa said. "This is an issue that frankly, we should have dealt with years ago."

The text of Shiozawa's resolution points out that the federal government has already indicated it won't prosecute patients who abide by their state's medical marijuana laws.

Utah: Mormon Church Opposes Medical Marijuana Edibles Bill

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By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

The Mormon church is opposing a bill before the Utah Legislature which would legalize the medicinal use of edible cannabis products.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints leaders claimed they were worried about "unintended consequences" of the bill introduced by Sen. Mark Madsen (R-Eagle Mountain), reports the Associated Press. A majority of state lawmakers in Utah are Mormons, so the church position on an issue usually is codified into law.

The church isn't objecting to another medical marijuana bill, a much more restrictive CBD-only measure that would only allow access to cannabis infused oil, according to church spokesman Eric Hawkins.

Madsen told The Salt Lake Tribune that church representatives told him and other lawmakers about their opposition, but wouldn't explain their reasoning. "Maybe they don't want to be known as the spcial interest who put their thumb on the scale and decided this for everyone in the state," he said.

"If they're going to put their thumb on the scale politically and force everyone to a standard, then I think they owe something of an explanation to the people," Sen. Madsen said. Madsen's right; at the very least, these hypocrites seem to be falling a little short of their ideals.

Both medical marijuana bills in the Utah Legislature have been approved in committee and are expected to be debated before the full Senate within a week.

Utah: Governor Open To Legalizing Medical Marijuana

UtahGovernorGaryHerbert[TrentNelson-SaltLakeTribune]

By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

Utah Governor Gary Herbert on Thursday said he would be open to legalizing marijuana for medicinal purposes, providing science shows it can benefit patients and "tight regulations" can control distribution.

"I'm open to the idea of medical marijuana and the discussion of how it can be used as a medicine based on science, and making sure we have good, collaborative efforts so we can answer the questions that are out there," Gov. Herbert said, reports Robert Gehrke at The Salt Lake Tribune.

The governor's position has noticeably softened since the recent legislative session, when he expressed "concerns" about a bill sponsored by state Sen. Mark Madsen (R-Saratoga Springs) which would have created a state-licensed system of medicinal cannabis growing facilities and dispensaries for patients with a doctor's authorization.

At that time, Gov. Herbert had claimed Madsen's bill could lead to a "slippery slope" towards legal recreational use. Madsen's bill failed in the Senate by a single vote; he's said he will reintroduce it next year.

The governor's comments represent progress, according to Connor Boyack, president of the Libertas Institute, a libertarian think tank. "Even during the legislative session, it became clear that the governor was backtracking his initial opposition to medical cannabis, so we expected this to happen and are encouraged to see him becoming more open-minded to it, just as many legislators are," Boyack said.

Utah: Republican State Senator Mark Madsen Advocates Medical Marijuana Legalization

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A conservative Republican Utah state senator has a “420” message for America: “It’s time to legalize medical cannabis.” In an exclusive video interview released Monday morning, Utah State Senator Mark Madsen discussed his own personal use of medical cannabis and advocates for national reform.

“We need to work from the principles of freedom and compassion and let the policy grow from there,” Sen. Madsen said. “I believe we should allow individuals and their physicians to make their own decisions on whether medical cannabis is an augmentation or an alternative to other traditional medical treatments. Government has no legitimate place in that process.”

In 2007, Madsen was nearly killed by an accidental overdose of fentanyl when a patch his doctor prescribed accidentally tore and released a fatal dose of the opiate.

Madsen was the sponsor of recent legislation in the state, S.B. 259, which would have legalized the cultivation, production, sale and possession of whole-plant medical cannabis for a range of conditions. The bill was narrowly defeated by one flipped vote in the Senate in March.

Shortly before introducing S.B. 259, Madsen travelled to Colorado to try medical cannabis, which he said provided great relief for his chronic back pain. In 2007, Madsen says he was inspired by the families lobbying for legislation passed in 2014 legalizing high-CBD medical cannabis extracts for epileptic patients.

Utah: Sick Mormon Mother Pleads For Legalized Medical Marijuana In Video

TreatingCancerDuringPregnancyNaturally[YouTube]

By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

A Mormon mother's YouTube video pleading for legalization of medical marijuana in Utah went viral on the Internet on Wednesday.

In the video, Tenille Farr of Spanish Fork tells how she was diagnosed with Hodgkin's lymphoma last summer while she was pregnant with her fifth son, Gabe, reports Kristen Moulton at The Salt Lake Tribune.

The video, posted by the Illegally Healed website and on its Facebook page, got hundreds of shares within hours on Wednesday.

Illegally Healed is for personal stories of people who have used medicinal cannabis, according to Angela Bacca, media and public relations director for the Drug Policy Project of Utah. That group is working with Illegally Healed to post stories about Utah residents who want to be able to use medical cannabis; Farr's was the first such video.

Farr was also one of the Utah residents who shared their stories with lawmakers debating SB 259, a medical marijuana bill, during the recent session. The bill, proposed by state Sen. Mark Madsen (R-Saratoga Springs), would have legalized cannabis for medicinal purposes, but the Utah Senate rejected it 14-15.

Utah: Medical Marijuana Bill Moving Forward

UtahMarijuanaReform[MedicalJane]

Bill Passes Senate Judiciary Committee, Heads to Senate Floor Next Week

Utah is the latest 'red' state to consider medical marijuana. Utah's Senate Judiciary Committee on Thursday approved a bill that would allow for the use of marijuana for medical purposes. The bill is expected to go to the Senate floor early next week.

Senate Bill 259, from Sen. Mark B. Madsen, would create a state registry of medical marijuana patients who could possess and use marijuana. The bill would also direct the state of Utah to issue licenses for cultivators, processors, and dispensaries to qualified patients.

“I am one step closer to legal access to my medicine,” said Christine Stenquist, a medical marijuana patient and executive director of Drug Policy Project of Utah. “Our elected leaders have an opportunity to help sick patients find relief and there is no excuse not to.”

“If medical marijuana can advance in Utah – with significant support from Mormons in and out of the legislature – it can advance anywhere in the U.S.,” said Ethan Nadelmann, executive director of the Drug Policy Alliance (DPA). “Medicine is medicine, regardless of one’s politics, faith or views about drugs.”

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