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David Rudoi Esq.

December 15, 2012

Ironically, on Friday December 14th, 2012, at 4:20 a.m. the Michigan Legislature approved 4 bills which will forever change the Michigan Medical Marihuana Act (MMMA). In 2008 the voters in the state of Michigan by ballot initiative voted in the Michigan Medical Marijuana Act with a resounding majority of 63%. Due to the MMMA being passed by a ballot initiative, for the Michigan legislature to make any changes to it takes a ¾ majority. The lame duck Republican senate passed the two main bills by a vote of 29-9 and 30-8 in the wee hours of Friday morning. Soon Afterwards the Republican controlled state house of representatives voted in the bills by a vote of 98-7 and 100-5. Now for these changes to become law Governor Rick Snyder must sign off, which will surely happen.

The Michigan Legislature is yet to release the exact wording of these bills as passed by both houses of the legislature (the House Enrolled Bill).  Given the currently available information the substance of the bills  are as follows:

–          HB4834:

  • Would require a driver’s license or state ID card in order to obtain a Michigan Medical Marijuana registry identification card.
  • Would extend the registry identification card’s validity from one to two years.
  • Would call for a private company to help the state process and issue the registry identification cards.
  • Would allow the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs to verify the validity of the registry identification cards to law enforcement personnel without allowing them full access to the registry or providing them with more information than  is needed to verify the card’s validity.

–          HB4851

  • Would add conditions for a “Bona Fide Physician Patient Relationship” which is an essential element to both qualify for a registry identification card and for the Section 8 Affirmative Defense.
  • Clarifies how medical marijuana plants must be enclosed under section 4 of the MMMA.
  • Forbids a person from becoming a caregiver if they have been convicted of a felony in the past 10 years or a felony that involves illegal drugs or an assault crime in their lifetime.

–          HB4853

  • Lays out the sentencing guidelines for a violation of the Michigan Medical Marihuana Act.

–          HB4856

  • Regulates the transportation of medical marijuana in cars making rules similar to that of handgun transport.

At Rudoi Law we are experts on the Michigan Medical Marijuana Act and are always current on any and all changes made to it through both case law and statute. For a full understanding of how the changes to the Michigan Medical Marijuana Act affect you or someone you know Contact Rudoi Law today.