Republican Gov. Doug Ducey of Arizona has only one extra day to signal a invoice that will require lab testing of medical marijuana merchandise and cut back the price to sufferers who entry the state’s medicinal cannabis program. The measure, Senate Invoice 1494, would require the testing of cannabis merchandise for pesticides, mildew, and fungus by November 1, 2020, and mandates that the state Division of Well being Providers implement requirements for the certification of cannabis analytical testing laboratories.
SB 1494 was handed unanimously by each homes of Arizona’s legislature on Might 27, within the Home of Representatives by a vote of 60 to Zero and within the state Senate by a margin of 28 to 0.
Republican Rep. Nancy Barto of Phoenix informed her colleagues within the Home earlier than the vote that the federal government ought to guarantee the standard and security of medical marijuana merchandise bought within the state.
“We had some severe testimony on it simply declaring the necessity to ensure the standard of what’s being prescribed is there and never being contaminated and hurting these which might be consuming this product,” Barto stated.
Invoice Reduces Affected person Charges
Earlier than the invoice was permitted by the legislature, Democratic Rep. Randy Freise of Tucson added an modification to the measure that will increase to 2 years the period of time that medical marijuana identification playing cards issued by the state are legitimate. The identification playing cards, that are required for sufferers and price $150, are at the moment good for just one yr.
“A whole lot of work went into this with plenty of stakeholders,” Friese informed his fellow representatives when he launched the modification.
Final yr, a invoice that will have diminished the annual charge for identification playing cards from $150 to $75 was rejected by Democrats as a result of it didn’t go far sufficient, in accordance with Republican Rep. Kevin Payne of Peoria.
“This yr we stated let’s double the period of time the cardboard is nice for, that’s simply nearly as good,” stated Payne.
Guaranteeing Hashish is Secure
Payne added that Arizona‘s cannabis business ought to prioritize the security of medical marijuana for the state’s sufferers.
“Marijuana needs to be handled like drugs, it should be performing like drugs,” he stated. “I would like them to have testing. Even aspirin has a label on it.”
SB 1494 is supported by the Arizona Public Well being Affiliation and the Arizona Hashish Laboratory Affiliation. The Arizona Division of Well being Providers, the Arizona Dispensaries Affiliation, and two massive cannabis producers, Copperstate Farms and Harvest Well being and Recreation, haven’t taken a place on the measure.
Demitri Downing, the founding father of the Marijuana Business Commerce Affiliation, characterised SB 1494 as a “compromise invoice that doesn’t include all the things that everybody needed, however that’s what good laws does.”
Ducey has till Saturday to signal or veto SB 1494. If he does nothing, the invoice will nonetheless go into impact with out his endorsement.