The group Safe Communities, Safe Kids was the strongest supporter of complete repeal of the voter-approved medical marijuana law during the last legislative session, and worked against all forms of regulation and a workable system for Montana citizens. When complete repeal became impossible, they encouraged legislators to get as close to repeal as possible. 62% of voters passed the law in 2004 — and in early 2011, polls showed that 76% supported reform rather than repeal.
Their efforts succeeded, and the result was our current law, SB423. Senator Larry Jent recently acknowledged that the current law was “designed to be a de facto repeal, and it worked.” Incredibly, Safe Communities, Safe Kids now claims the law actually fulfills the original voter’s intent, which they worked so hard to deny last session. Apparently they want us to believe the voters who voted for the medical marijuana program really didn’t want one at all.
The current law allows for warrantless searches, denies patients the ability to acquire any plants or seeds, prohibits any form of real regulation or oversight, and requires doctors to pay for investigations into their practices. It also assumes that legislators know better than physicians when it comes to patient care.
Today, Safe Communities, Safe Kids is clearly concerned that the voters will again take matters into their own hands, and they have blasted an email out around the state, including to many churches. Here is a copy of their email message:
Dear __________ ,
The Montana Cannabis Industry Association has organized an effort to repeal SB423. Their initiative, I-124, will be on the November ballot and the language is confusing. Vote for Senate Bill 423 or Montana will revert back to having the uncontrolled, lawless, rapidly growing marijuana industry we experienced prior to the passing of SB423.
The Legislature did not overturn the will of the people with SB423, instead they took medical marijuana back to what voters initially voted for. The law allows seriously ill people to use and grow marijuana but SB423 does not allow for the selling of marijuana for profit. SB423 effectively eliminates the industry that Montanans never voted for and don’t want.
Senate Bill 423 is working. Since it’s passing, the number of registered medical marijuana users has dropped from 30,000 to 8,849, the number of providers has dropped from 4,800 to 395, and many of the storefronts are disappearing. With the law imposing additional requirements for minors to obtain cards, there are now only 2 cards holders under the age of 18.
On Initiative 124 vote
[X]FOR Senate Bill 423, a bill which repeals I-148 and enacts a new medical marijuana program.
[ ]AGAINST Senate Bill 423, a bill which repeals I-148 and enacts a new medical marijuana program. A vote against Senate Bill 423 will restore I-148.
Vote For SB423
Stop the Pot Industry
Please forward to family and friends.
Safe Community Safe Kids