Minnesota House of Representatives


State Representative Carly Melin

315 State Office BuildingState Office Building
100 Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd.

For more information contact: Matt Roznowski 651-296-8875

Posted: May 16 2014 7:46PM
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Press/News Releases

House approves medical cannabis conference committee report with broad bipartisan support

ST. PAUL, MN – Today, a broad bipartisan majority of state lawmakers in the Minnesota House of Representatives approved legislation to provide safe and legal access to medical cannabis to improve the quality of life of Minnesotans with serious medical conditions such as cancer, HIV/AIDS and seizures. The bill passed by a vote of 89-40.

The Senate passed the same bill with broad bipartisan support earlier today by a vote of 46-16. It now heads to Governor Dayton, who says he will sign it into law.

The compromise bill, announced yesterday by the Dayton Administration, state lawmakers and advocates, addresses the medical community’s desire for medical oversight and for gathering quality information about patients’ health impacts while accommodating the safety and security concerns of the law enforcement community.

“The personal stories and struggles of Minnesotans, including children like Amelia Weaver and her family, are what made this strong compromise possible,” said State Representative Carly Melin (DFL – Hibbing), the bill’s chief House author. “Minnesota is taking an important step toward compassion and relief for children and adults who are suffering.”

Details of the bill are as follows:


This bill creates a safe and secure method of providing medical cannabis to those patients whose health care provider certifies them to be suffering from conditions including:

  • Cancer associated with severe/chronic pain, nausea or severe vomiting, or cachexia or severe wasting;
  • Glaucoma;
  • Tourette’s Syndrome;
  • Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS);
  • Seizures, including those characteristic of epilepsy;
  • Severe and persistent muscle spasms, including those characteristic of multiple sclerosis;
  • Crohn’s Disease; and
  • Terminal illness, with a life expectancy of less than one year, if the illness or treatment produces severe/chronic pain, nausea or severe vomiting, cachexia or severe wasting.

The bill creates a patient registry process for monitoring and evaluating the health impacts experienced by patients taking medical cannabis. This information will help health professionals broaden their understanding of the benefits, risks and side effects of medical cannabis.

The bill also establishes a medical cannabis task force that will conduct an assessment of medical cannabis therapeutic research. The task force will evaluate the state’s medical cannabis program and the impact of medical cannabis in Minnesota.


STEP 1: Minnesotans seeking to use medical cannabis to treat one of the qualified medical conditions will receive certification of their condition from a Minnesota-licensed health care practitioner (a doctor, physician assistant or advanced practice nurse who is providing care to the patient). NOTE: The Commissioner of Health will register a designated caregiver for a patient if the patient’s health care provider certifies that the patient is unable to self-administer medication.

STEP 2: After receipt of a patient’s application, the Commissioner of Health will enroll the patient in the registry program and issue a registry verification. Applications will be denied only under specific circumstances, such as an applicant providing false information or an applicant lacking certification that he or she has one of the qualifying medical conditions.

STEP 3: Minnesotans issued a registry verification will be eligible to receive medical cannabis for their condition at one of the distribution facilities set up by the state’s medical cannabis manufacturers.

STEP 4: As part of their certification and participation in the program, patients must agree to continue treatment for their condition and their health care provider must agree to provide ongoing reports about the patient’s health status/condition.


  • The medical cannabis provided to patients in the registry program will come from two in-state manufacturers licensed and inspected by the state.
  • To become registered manufacturers of medical cannabis, entities must apply to the Commissioner of Health for consideration. The Commissioner will consider multiple factors in assessing manufacturer applications including fees to be charged.
  • The Commissioner will require registered manufacturers to supply medical cannabis products to patients by July 1, 2015.
  • Medical cannabis will be provided to patients in approved forms, such as a liquid, pill or vaporized delivery method that does not require the use of dried leaves or plant form but allows for whole plant extracts.
  • Each registered manufacturer will operate no more than four distribution facilities around the state. Facilities will be located based on geographical need and to improve patient access.
  • Registered manufacturers must contract with a laboratory for testing the quality and consistency of the medical cannabis products.


July 1, 2015 – Date when medical cannabis will be made available to registered patients.

2 – Number of medical cannabis manufacturing facilities approved to operate in Minnesota.

8 –Number of distribution centers dispensing medical cannabis in Minnesota (manufacturers may phase in facilities over time).

$200 – Medical cannabis registry annual enrollment fee.

$50 – Reduced enrollment fee for Minnesotans receiving Social Security disability, Supplemental Security Insurance payments or enrolled in medical assistance or MinnesotaCare.

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