Michigan Cities want Marijuana Regulations

By: Rachel Thomas Email
By: Rachel Thomas Email

Medical marijuana has lit up a haze of confusion across the state of Michigan.

"It's an absolute mess. I'm sympathetic to voters but the draft of the legislation its almost incoherent," said Mayor Kalmin Smith of Grand Ledge.

Dozens of cities across the state including Lansing, East Lansing, and Grand Ledge have imposed and estended moratoriums. They are waiting for guidance from the state to tell them how to implement this law.

"I'm hearing the same the same things from the city of Lansing. They really would like us give some help with guidelines in how in the world we are going to implement and administer this," said Rep. Joan Bauer, (D) Lansing.

'Right now the law is very grey; not because of anything the legislature did. Because it was put on the ballot by a group that wanted to legalize marijuana. They didn't care how grey it was," said Sen. Rick Jones, (R) Grand Ledge.

The medical marijuana law doesn't specify where or how plants should be grown. It also doesn't say how patients should obtain their medicine if they don't want to grow it themsleves. This is where dispensary owners have had to fill in the blanks.

"It's not illegal but it's not legal. Do it at your own risk---that's what they told me," said Alternative Medicine owner, Matthew McGill.

Store owners and city leaders both want more regulations so neither have to take risks.

"I don't want to go to jail for anything I shouldn't go to jail for," said McGill.

"We don't want to get caught in a legal quagmire where we'll have to spend time and money in court to straighten this out. We want to do it right the first time," said city councilmember Don Willems of Grand Ledge.

The mayor of Grand Ledge says cities can't keep extending temporary moratoriums forever; something he's done twice. Cities are hoping the state will lead the way. The senate judiciary committee plans to create a subcommittee that will reevaluate the medical marijuana law beginning this month.

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  • by tom Location: albion on Jan 12, 2011 at 05:23 AM
    colorados way is not the way that would take my right to grow then I bwould half to grow and not get a card.I cant do any thing I used to do growing is my only hobby I have left.So if they take that from me I just wont renew my card and keep growing any ways.I think the government needs reformed not the medical marijuana law.We need to take our country back from the government and the rich.
  • by Mama K. Location: Lansing on Jan 5, 2011 at 04:47 PM
    How about some common sense? Medical Marijuana is a great concept. However, it can be and is now prescribed in MI for ANYTHING. So, when voters were thinking of those with nausea related to cancer and other life-threatening illnesses and to far lesser degree some eye conditions (which now have far more effective pharmaceuticals available), they were not contemplating 'muscle strain' or the myriad of other conditions that this substance is now being used. While not all doctor's are like the one's that rent out MI hotel conference rooms and charge people off the street $50 for an 'examination' for the prescription (without any medical records being needed and only blood pressure and temp. being taken) it is still a problem when this stuff is so greatly unregulated. It's clearly not about medicine folks -- as the number of MM outlets will top the number of Lansing pharmacies once the moratorium is lifted. Let's have compassion and some protections ONLY for those that REALLY need.
  • by RUexperienced? Location: Lansing on Jan 4, 2011 at 02:21 PM
    A person with cancer, arthritis, or other debilitating illness physically can not grow marijuana. It takes a professional, dedicated to the job, with a large investment in infrastructure and time to grow decent medical-grade marijuana. Dispensaries are the only way for the professional grower to connect with the ill person. Does Merk sell heart pills directly to John Doe? Do you have to go to Phizer to get Viagra? There needs to be a distribution system for medical marijuana, but the law doesn't provide for it. Put a small tax on it, if it makes you feel better about yourselves. Merk and Phizer make good money providing medicine, why shouldn't the professional grower? If the politicians don't clarify the law, the court system will, and the politicians may not like the court's interpretation.
  • by LeAnn Location: Webberville on Jan 4, 2011 at 06:33 AM
    This is all the fault of our state government. They had plenty of time to write up the law better and more clearly than was done by the time the measure was voted on and approved. I find it sad that some people are being punished and penalized for something even the people controlling the punishments and penalties don't understand and don't have a clear handle on. I'm sick and tired of all levels of government blaming the citizens for the mistakes they've made in the offices we elected them to. If we eff up, out here in the general public, we're not quite allowed the same right to throw our hands up saying "Well, golly gee, I just didn't know so let's just penalize willy-nilly until we do figure it out." That's nothing but a crock of BS, and it's the government that needs to get on the ball and figure this out.
  • by Nolan Location: Coldwater on Jan 3, 2011 at 11:39 AM
    Let us Smoke our Bud!
  • by WILXSucks4Censor Location: Lansing on Jan 3, 2011 at 06:50 AM
    So why the hell don't any of my comments get posted? As a news/media outlet, you people are supposed to be dedicated to the upholding and defense of the 1st amendment, so what gives with the sh*tty censorship? Are you afraid to post someone's comments for having the balls to say what most people think for a fleeting moment before blinking back into submission? But I guess asking about having balls isn't a question that should be directed at those without any.
  • by safemeds Location: lansing on Jan 2, 2011 at 09:36 PM
    I hope they take away the gray areas but do it in a manor that doesn't hurt the intent of the bill the people voted for. There is a need for dispensaries and need to regulated just as Pharmacy's do. look at Colorado as a model make it a win win for all.
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