By Derrick Stanley
Voters ended the Montana Marijuana Act last month, renaming it the Montana Medical Marijuana Act. One change that came with the renaming was a three-patient limit on providers, a change that closed medical dispensaries all over the state, leaving thousands of patients with no provider.
The limit, which took effect in August, was overrruled last week by District Judge James Reynolds.
"The folks that are maybe the most in need are the least able to provide, to grow their own," Reynolds said about his ruling, as reported by the Associated Press. "I think speed is more important than niceties."
The Montana Cannabis Industry Association expected the three-patient limit to be eliminated with the passing of the new initiative, but it was not.
"It punished the patients and the sickest people in the state," Bobby Long, owner of the Flower dispensary in Missoula, told the Missoulian. "It helped the black market and hurts people who were trying to do the right thing."
"The people who work providing marijuana in Montana were — let's face it — they were jerked around quite a bit," lobbyist Kate Cholewa told the AP. "They are somewhat used to it, and very good at coming back."