Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder has signed the medical marijuana reform package regulating the industry and legalizing edibles, according to an MLive.com report. The Republican governor says the new laws will help Michiganders “access safe products to relieve their suffering.”
“We can finally implement a solid framework that gives patients a safe source from which to purchase and utilize medical marijuana,” he said in the report.
Until now, the industry had operated as a “gray market.” Under the 2008 law passed by voters, medical cannabis was deemed legal. However, dispensaries were not explicitly permitted, which left them open to crackdowns by law enforcement.
Three bills are included in the reform package; HB4209 and HB4827 were “tie-barred” together, meaning neither could take effect unless both were enacted. HB4209 creates the Medical Marihuana Facilities Licensing Act, which establishes a licensing and regulation framework for growers, processors, secure transporters, dispensaries, and safety compliance facilities. According to the bill summary, the framework draws from elements of the regulatory structures already in place under the Michigan Liquor Control Code and the Michigan Gaming Control and Revenue Act. The measure also creates a Medical Marijuana Licensing Board and a Marihuana Advisory Panel. HB4827 establishes a “seed-to-sale” tracking system, enabling officials to oversee the cannabis processed, transferred, stored, or disposed by licensed medical marijuana operators. HB4210 allows the manufacture of cannabis-infused edibles.
“These bills are for the patients. They will help children with seizure disorders, they will help people with cancer maintain their quality of life,” Rep. Mike Callton, who sponsored HB4209 and HB4210 said in the MLive report.
The bills will take effect in 90 days.