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Montana politics, elections and legislative news

Medical Marijuana On Friday's Legislative Agenda

Medical marijuana sign.
Flickr user Laurie Avocado (CC-BY-2)

Friday at the Montana Legislature, lawmakers will hear about a bill that would change who investigates false medical marijuana claims, and ups the penalties.

Senator Roger Webb says Senate Bill 403 takes the responsibility of weeding out these recreational users away from the Department of Health and Human Services and gives it to Department of Labor and Industry, which already monitors medical marijuana dispensaries.

“DPHHS has not done their job … The statute says they are supposed to go out and inspect the medical marijuana users … the doctors that are prescribing, and they’re not doing it.”

The bill would also increase fines from $1,000 to $1,500 on top of a potential one-year jail sentence for falsely holding a medical marijuana card or license.

Opponents say this is aimed at further inhibiting the use of medical marijuana, while other lawmakers expressed concerns over regulating medical practices already overseen by the Board of Medical Examiners.

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