Medical Marijuana in Ohio
MEDICAL MARIJUANA IN OHIO: WHERE DO THEY STAND?
The controversy on whether or not to legalize marijuana continues in Ohio, the newest state looking to approve medical marijuana for the sick and terminally ill. Per an article appearing in the Washington Post on November 4, 2015, voters rejected the proposed legislation. The reason in part is the elderly vote that clearly wants no part of the plant on the streets. But that was only a small percentage of the actual vote. Ohio residents read between the lines and realized that if they approved and passed the legislation into law, an “oligopoly” would take place. Instead of the state and patients benefiting from the decision, special interest groups, the select few wealthy investors, would turn a huge profit. This caused concern among the majority who in good conscience could not vote “yes.”
There’s no doubt that the legalization in all 52 states is inevitable. To date, 24 states have already approved the use. Per an article appearing in the Huffington Post, December 28, 2015, Missouri and Florida are also expecting to add legislation to the ballot for the approval of marijuana for medicinal purposes. In this article, it also suggests that Ohio groups backing the legislation for their state may try once again in November.
As recent as January 21, 2016, the website Cleveland.com, confirms reports that the National Marijuana Group plans on adding an amended version of the 2015 proposed legislation. This, according to their sources, would include a plan for several stores to carry the plant with supplies like a Vape pen for consumption. Along with that is also the option for suffering patients to grow their own plants. Though the amendment is not yet on paper, the planned ideas are circulating. Lack of funding was the reason for the first try that went south. As soon as the residents saw that special interests groups were off point trying to legalize recreational marijuana, instead of limiting marijuana for the sick, they lost interest.
On February 16, 2016, an article appearing on Cleveland.com disclosed that the amended proposal for medical marijuana and its patient benefits was taking shape. Feeding off prior verbiage created in states that have already approved legislation, the assigned three co-chair members are forming a campaign to win the votes of its residents in favor of the approval. Part of the new proposed legislation includes a state medical ID card for all patients approved for marijuana use for their illness. The state would make back their investment through tax applied to the purchase and licensing fees for owners of the stores.
This time around, the state would play a prominent role is not only licensing approved businesses, but would also play a part in the growing and processing for patient use. With the influence of pro-active outside groups who have helped get out the vote for numerous other states, the possibility for new legislation approved for medicinal purposes is expected. If the language stays focused on the core issue, marijuana for medicinal purposes and retains the option for patients to grown their own, Ohio may become the 25th state to approve its limited use.