2012 Election – Marijuana Initiatives
USA Mobile Drug Testing compliance specialists were not all too happy with multiple victories for drug law reform all across the country. Voters in three states had an opportunity to legalize recreational marijuana. Three other states casted ballots on marijuana for medical use. So what happened:
Colorado – Amendment 64: Regulate Marijuana like Alcohol Act of 2012
Amendment 64 is a revenue raising amendment and makes the personal use, possession, and limited home-growing of marijuana legal for adults 21 years of age and older. The amendment also establishes a system in which marijuana is regulated and taxed similarly to alcohol. It is currently illegal to drive while impaired by marijuana, and it will remain illegal under the amendment. Nothing in amendment 64 is intended to require an employer to permit or accommodate the use, consumption, possession, transfer, display, transportation, sale or growing of marijuana in the workplace or to affect the ability of employers to have policies restricting the use of marijuana by employees.
Washington – Initiative Measure 502
This law legalizes the possession of marijuana for adults age 21 and older and was also promoted as a revenue raising initiative. Initiative 502 removes state-law prohibitions against producing, processing, and selling marijuana, and subject to licensing and regulation by the liquor control board. State agencies will regulate numbers of stores per county, operating hours, security, quality control, labeling, and other health and safety issues. Initiative 502 establishes a new DUI limit of 5 nanograms of active THC per milliliter of whole blood. The initiative does require workplace accommodation but the issue is to be studied.
Massachusetts – Massachusetts Medical Marijuana Act
The purpose of this Act is protect patients with debilitating medical conditions, as well as their practitioners and caregivers, from arrest and prosecution, if such patients engage in the medical use of marijuana. No school, employer or landlord may refuse to enroll, employ or lease to a person solely for their status as a registered qualifying patient or a registered caregiver. However in this Act, nothing is to be construed to require an employer to accommodate the use of medical marijuana in any workplace
Montana – Senate Bill 423
Montana voted to reaffirm Senate Bill 423 whichrepealed I-148, Montana’s original medical marijuana law and a voter initiative that passed in 2004. The language of this bill is confusing and can be interpreted differently. Use of marijuana for medical purposes seems to remain legal for patients with a valid registry card prior to the new effective date, but new users will not have the same rights. “(1) A person who possesses a registry identification card issued pursuant to 50-46-103 before [the effective date of this section] may not be arrested, prosecuted, or penalized in any manner or be denied any right or privilege, including but not limited to civil penalty or disciplinary action by a professional licensing board or the department of labor and industry” Will have to see how the act is interpreted but seem to be a pull back on medical marijuana by the State of Montana
Oregon voted against legalized pot, turning down Measure 80 54 percent to 46 percent.
Arkansas – medical marijuana iinitiative went down to defeat.