May 29, 2012
May 16, 2012(Key vote)
Title: Authorizes Medical Marijuana Dispensaries
Vote Smart's Synopsis:
Vote to pass a bill that authorizes the operation of medical marijuana dispensaries.
Authorizes opening 3 “compassion centers” to serve as medical marijuana dispensaries (Sec. 1).
Defines “compassion centers” as a not-for-profit corporation that acquires, possesses, cultivates, manufactures, delivers, transfers, transports, supplies or dispenses marijuana and related supplies to registered “qualified patients” or their resisted “primary caregivers” (Sec. 1).
Defines “qualifying patient” as a person who has been diagnosed by a practitioner as having a “debilitating medical condition” and is a resident of Rhode Island (Sec. 1).
Defines “debilitating medical condition” as any of the following (Sec. 1):
Cancer, glaucoma, human immunodeficiency virus, acquired immune deficiency syndrome or Hepatitis C;
A chronic disease, medical condition or its treatment that produces one or more of the following:
Cachexia or wasting syndrome;
“Severe, debilitating, chronic” pain;
“Persistent” muscle spasms; or
Any other medical condition or treatment approved by the department.
Defines “primary caregiver” as a person who is at least 21 years old and assists no more than 5 qualifying patients with medical marijuana use (Sec. 1).
Requires a compassion center to obtain a registry identification card prior to opening by submitting the following to the Department of Health (Sec. 1):
A $5,000 fee;
The legal name and articles of incorporation of the compassion center;
A physical address; and
A name, address, date of birth, and criminal background check of each officer, board member, volunteer and employee of the compassion center, if ordered.
Requires a compassion center's registry identification card to be subject to revocation if the compassion center does any of the following (Sec. 1):
Possesses an amount of marijuana exceeding the limits established by the department;
Violates state law;
Violates departmental regulations; or
Employs or enters into a business relationship with a medical practitioner who provides written certification of a patient’s medical condition.
Prohibits a compassion center from being subject to prosecution, seizure, or penalty for selling, giving, or distributing marijuana within the limits established by the Department of Health (Sec. 1).
Authorizes the Department of Health to establish regulations for compassion centers (Sec. 1).
Authorizes a qualified patient or primary caregiver to possess an amount of marijuana that does not exceed the following (Sec. 1):
12 mature marijuana plants;
12 seedlings; and
2.5 ounces of usable marijuana.
Limits a primary caregiver’s possession of marijuana to no more than 24 marijuana plants and 5 ounces of usable marijuana for the use of qualifying patients to whom he or she is affiliated with under the state's Department of Health registration (Sec. 1).
Limits each qualifying patient to 2 primary caregivers (Sec. 1).
Requires qualifying patients seeking a registry identification card to submit the following information to the Department of Health (Sec. 1):
Application or renewal fee;
Name, address, date of birth of the qualifying patient;
Name, address, date of birth of the patient's practitioner; and
Name, address, date of birth of each primary caregiver of the qualifying patient, if any.
Requires the Department of Health to verify the information in a registry identification application and approve or deny it within 15 days (Sec. 1).
Requires the Department of Health to issue registry identification cards within 5 days of approving an application which will be valid for 2 years and will contain the following information (Sec. 1):
Date of issuance;
Registry identification number; and
NOTE: THIS IS A SUBSTITUTE BILL, MEANING THE LANGUAGE OF THE ORIGINAL BILL HAS BEEN REPLACED. THE DEGREE TO WHICH THE SUBSTITUTE BILL TEXT DIFFERS FROM THE PREVIOUS VERSION OF THE TEXT CAN VARY GREATLY.