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Lawmakers will try again to fix Michigan’s medical marijuana law

Feb 13, 2015

Credit Prensa 420 / Flickr

A group of state lawmakers will try again to make major changes to Michigan’s medical marijuana system.

Bill sponsors say the state’s voter-approved medical marijuana law is too vague.

“That’s created controversial court cases that have created what I believe are medical injustices, social injustices, and health policy issues,” said state Rep. Lisa Lyons, R-Alto. “We have to get this fixed.”

Lyons is sponsoring House Bill 4210, which would allow patients to use non-smokable forms of cannabis, such as baked goods or oils. She says patients such as children and people with respiratory problems should not have to smoke cannabis to get its medical benefits.

“They’d have to do so without fear of being arrested and prosecuted and being made into criminals,” she said.

“These are not criminals, they’re patients.”

Another bill in the package would make dispensaries legal in communities that choose to allow them.

Similar legislation died late last year when law enforcement groups pressured lawmakers to kill the bills.

Lansing Police Chief Michael Yankowski says he’s confident bill supporters and law enforcement groups can get on the same page this time around.

“We want clarity. It will help us move forward in keeping our communities safe as these laws and regulations continue to change,” said Yankowski.

Rep. Mike Callton, R-Nashville, who is sponsoring the House Bill 4209 to allow dispensaries, says supporters made a mistake last year by not engaging some law enforcement groups earlier in the process.