DeWine rejects medical marijuana petition


At the same time that a task force formed by Governor John Kasich is looking into the points of legalizing medical marijuana, Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine has rejected the third petition for a proposed amendment to the Ohio Constitution which would attempt to legalize marijuana for medical use in the state.

On Jan. 13, the Ohio Attorney General’s Office received a written petition to amend the Ohio Constitution, entitled “Ohio Medical Cannabis Amendment,” from the group Ohio Medical Cannabis Care LLC, the third submission of such a titled amendment by this group. One thousand valid signatures from registered Ohio voters were submitted. However, Attorney General DeWine found at least five defects with the summary language, according to information released.

DeWine said the summary language states that a “qualified medical patient” is a person at least 21 years old, while the proposed amendments states that such persons must be at least 18 years old.

He said the summary language states that information kept by the Ohio Medical Cannabis Commission (OMCC) is exempted from the “Freedom of Information Act” except for disclosure to Ohio law enforcement and Ohio courts.

However, the proposed amendment only permits disclosure to law enforcement officials, he added.

DeWine cited the summary language which he says states the OMCC is permitted to confirm cardholder statute to an employer, school, court, or enforcement officials.

However, the proposed amendment only permits the OMCC to confirm status on the cardholder’s permission.

He said the summary language limits signage on testing facilities and dispensaries to a cannabis leaf or green cross.

However, the proposed amendment does not provide for that limitation.

Finally DeWine said the summary language defines “medical use” as “using cannabis, dried plant from a cannabis living plat of the genus cannabis.”

However, the proposed amendment defines “medical use” as “the acquisition, possession, administration, cultivation in an enclosed and locked facility, delivery, transportation, transfer, or use of medical cannabis or medical cannabis accessories or supplies relating to the administration of cannabis to treat or alleviate a patient’s qualifying medical condition.”

DeWine summed up his rejection with – “For these reasons, I am unable to certify the summary as a fair and truthful statement of the proposed amendment.”

DeWine rejected the first submission on July 29, 2015, and the second submission on Oct. 2, 2015, on similar grounds.

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By Frank Lewis

[email protected]

Reach Frank Lewis at 740-353-3101, ext. 1928, or on Twitter @franklewis.

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