Minnesota House of Representatives


State Representative Paul Thissen

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Posted: May 1 2014 1:12PM
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Press/News Releases

House DFL Leaders, Rep. Melin and Parents with Suffering Children Announce Medical Marijuana Compromise

Saint Paul, Minnesota – State Rep. Carly Melin (DFL – Hibbing) joined House DFL leaders, parents and children to announce a new, compromise medical marijuana legislative proposal today. Rep. Melin and House DFL leaders worked to develop this proposal with parents who have sick children that have been advocating for medical marijuana. Law enforcement has signaled they do not oppose the legislation.

This scaled-back medical marijuana proposal would create a medical cannabis clinical trial, allowing limited participation by children who are suffering and adults with severe illnesses. The proposal also includes the option of a state-based manufacturer of medication if no federal source of medication is available. Qualifying conditions would include seizures (including those characteristic with epilepsy), cancer, glaucoma, HIV/AIDS, Tourette’s syndrome, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), multiple sclerosis (MS), and Crohn’s disease.

“Our goal since the beginning has been to provide needed medicine to Minnesotans and children who are suffering and deserve a better chance at a good life,” said Melin. “I am pleased that we have developed a proposal that can provide real relief for Minnesotans who need it and that has a strong chance at getting signed into law.”

The bill incorporates much of Governor Dayton’s clinical trial proposal, but goes further in providing assurance that medication will be available if no federal clinical trial is approved. It also includes the ability for vapor delivery (plant/leaf) of medical marijuana, but only under direct, in-person supervision and the control of a licensed health care provider.

The bill responds to concerns that law enforcement has had with the original medical marijuana bill. The proposal includes only one state-based manufacturer under strict Health Department supervision and only patients approved for the clinical trial will have access. There will be no grow-your-own dispensaries and no smoking of marijuana permitted.

“All along, our goal has been a compromise that provides needed medicine to children and Minnesotans who need it while responding to concerns from law enforcement and the health community,” said Speaker Paul Thissen. “We believe this legislation achieves a compromise that can move forward this session.”

“I want to thank Rep. Melin, advocates of medical marijuana, and the law enforcement community for their openness to a compromise,” said House Majority Leader Erin Murphy. “In the remaining days of session I am optimistic that we can move forward.”

The House Rules committee will take up this legislation tomorrow in Room 200 of the State Office Building after the House floor session adjourns.

The bill language of the legislation is posted publicly here: http://www.house.leg.state.mn.us/comm/docs/S2470DE1.pdf

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