There is a clerical error in the initiative. A 9 should be a 7 in effective date section. We have documentation that demonstrates our intent in regards to which provisions were to go into effect immediately. We have the draft with section 7 effective immediately. At the last minute, before the draft was moved out of legislative services, we were told two sections needed to be added at the front of the bill. These added sections represented other places in the Montana Codes that cross-referenced the statute we are amending by initiative and have little to do with the initiative itself.
But these two changes shifted numbering as the draft was moving out the door.
We do have the correspondence that indicates we still wanted the same sections to go into effect, despite these additions.
We have additional documentation to the above from the drafting process. The intent was clear. We have consulted with experts. This is a clerical error. There is an avenue for fixing it that would not delay implementation of the proper section.
This initiative was read many times by many people. The process is a complicated one. There’s no one person to hang from a tree.
Yes, Steve Zabawa will try to politicize a clerical error. But the MTCIA has invested half of a million dollars in a lawsuit to eliminate the 3 patient provision. We have gone to the Montana Supreme Court and the United States Supreme Court and back to a district court to stop the 3 patient limit. There is no mistaking the substance and intent of the initiative.
We do not wish to politicize a clerical error and re-invent it as something more as we don’t think it would serve the best interests of anyone doing their best to provide services to the medical marijuana patients of Montana.