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Oregon Looks At Changing Mmj Law.


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It "It only loosens Lawmakers Pitch Late-Session MMJ Bill Posted by CN Staff on May 18, 2011 at 19:53:18 PT

By Kimberly Melton, The Oregonian

Source: Oregonian

 

medical.gif Salem, Oregon -- State lawmakers didn't move forward with any of the 20 bills that attempted to change Oregon's medical marijuana laws. But a small bi-partisan coalition of legislators has breathed new life into this controversial issue some thought tabled for the session.

 

Today, the House Rules committee will hold a public hearing on House Bill 3664, which aims to put more restrictions on who can receive a medical marijuana card and how many plants growers can produce. The bill also aims to give police greater access to patient and grower records.

 

Medical marijuana advocates say the bill is too far reaching and attempts to criminalize those who use the drug.

 

Rep. Andy Olson, R-Albany, chief proponent of the bill, said he is not trying to kill the program but ensure that the option is available for patients who need it.

 

"There's a real concern in this building among legislators when we have 20 bills on an issue," said Olson, a retired police officer. "The thing that drove most of those bills was a sense of abuse in the system. We wanted to move forward with something that puts in more accountability but still protects the patient and their needs."

 

House Judiciary co-chairs Wayne Krieger, R-Gold Beach and Jeff Barker, D-Aloha, pushed for a workgroup to develop one bill to resolve what they say are clear problems and lax rules in the medical marijuana law approved by voters in 1998.

 

Robert Wolfe, director of the Oregon Marijuana Policy Initiative, which represents 14 medical marijuana advocacy groups, predicted that the bill would lead to more limited access for patients and more targeting by law enforcement.

 

"The bill itself is a big problem," Wolfe said. "It only loosens the reins for this cowboy justice by sheriffs to pick on medical patients."

 

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Complete Article: http://drugsense.org/url/ffys1i6s

 

Source: Oregonian, The (Portland, OR)

Author: Kimberly Melton, The Oregonian

Published: May 18, 2011

Copyright: 2011 The Oregonian

Contact: letters@news.oregonian.com

Website: http://www.oregonlive.com/oregonian/

 

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