Comprehensive Medical Marijuana Bill Introduced in Wisconsin

Comprehensive Medical Marijuana Bill Introduced in Wisconsin

[Update November 1, 2013: A companion bill, Assembly Bill 480, has been introduced and assigned to the Committee on Health in the Assembly.]

MADISON, WI — Lawmakers in Wisconsin introduced a bill this week to legalize medical marijuana in the state, and the bill has significant support with 18 co-sponsors in both chambers of the legislature.

If passed, Senate Bill 363, introduced Tuesday, would allow registered patients to possess up to three ounces of medical marijuana. Patients or their caregivers would be allowed to grow up to twelve plants, or purchase their medicine from a state regulated, non-profit medical marijuana dispensary.

Caregivers would be allowed to treat up to five patients.

Under the proposal, medical marijuana dispensaries, or “compassion centers,” would be required to be located 500 feet or more from schools.  All medical marijuana sold at the compassion centers would be required to be lab tested for mold, fungus, pesticides or other contaminants.  The bill also authorizes medical marijuana dispensaries to provide delivery services to patients.

The proposed legislation would prevent patients from operating heavy macheinery or engaging in “any other conduct that endangers the health or well-being of another person” while medicated.

The bill also bans smoking marijuana on school buses, public transportation, at work, any public or private school, correctional facilities, public parks, beaches, recreation centers, or youth centers.

The bill was introduced by state Senators John Erpenbach (D), Lena Taylor (D), Timothy Cullen (D), Nikiya Harris (D) and John Lehman (D).  The five senators are joined by thirteen co-sponsors in the Assembly.

Specific qualifying conditions for Wisconsin’s proposed medical marijuana program would include cancer, glaucoma, HIV/AIDS, Chron’s disease, hepatitis C, Alzheimer’s, amytrophic lateral sclerosis, nail patella syndrome, Ehlers−Danlos Syndrome, and post−traumatic stress disorder.

Ailments also includes any chronic or debilitating disease or medical condition  that causes cachexia, severe pain, severe nausea, seizures, including those characteristic of epilepsy, or severe and persistent muscle spasms, including those characteristic of multiple sclerosis.”

The bill allows the Department of Health Services to add additional ailments as necessary.

The bill has been assigned to the Senate Health and Human Services Committee, chaired by Republican Senator Leah Vukmir, but has not yet been scheduled for a committee hearing.  Bill sponsor Sen. Erpenbach is a member of the committee.

If passed, the bill would immediately begin protecting patients by allowing a medical necessity defense in court, with the medical marijuana program fully established within six months of the Governor’s signature.

  • Mike

    Sounds pretty good outta the gate. Fight like hell to keep it that way, because the prohibitionists will do everything they can to water it down if they can’t defeat it. Illinois is a good example of a bad example of that. Get it done.

    I especially like the interim medical necessity defense. That shows someone really cares about the patients. In Illinois, they treat it like “It’ll get here and it ‘s a privilege. Quit your whining and try not to break the law.” As if they cared…only if they caught you, then they’d care in all the wrong ways.

    Wisconsin is a complicated state. A rich progressive tradition and a high rate of union membership and political participation, but all too often ruled by backwards people trying to return the state to the 19th century, before Fighting Bob LaFollette cleaned things up.

    Now folks that almost make Joe McCarthy look like an upright citizen run the Republican Party. Of course, some of them are more libertarian than Republican and may be persuadable on MMJ. Good luck.

  • sam

    I support this. There are many children/adults being cured from cancer, from having seizures, and too too many other diseases/disorders that this plant can treat and cure. Taking the time to get educated will make all the difference in the world…

    • Heisenberg

      So you’re saying all I had to do was smoke pot? Damn…

      • Common sense

        Anyone who isnt completly ignorant has never said that, however it has proven to help one overcome some of the side effects of cancer ie: Appetite, mood, and possibly some pains(individually varying)

        • dfasdfga

          no. it is a cure for cancer when you put it into an oil. watch RUN FROM THE CURE.

          • Marcy

            I watched that and also read on article about him. It does cure cancer but not all. The numbers are still very high- 70%. I have epilepsy and I want to try oil really bad. It has helped so many people with that too. I’ve been doing research like crazy, and the oil is what I need. I ran out of options for different meds, I had a nerve stimulator implant (didn’t work), and there are no types of surgeries that will help my kind of seizures (which is every type). Many years dealing with this stuff and what I need is illegal. WTF?! Doesn’t have the side effects like all the damn pills I have to take, that don’t even completely control them. Thank you FDA and closed-minded people from preventing this wonderful medicine to be used by everybody. I have so many different names for those people, lol.

    • Jeff

      THC is NOT a cure for cancer. Show me a study that suggests that and I’ll believe you.

      • Bohdan
      • Marco

        Not THC but CBDs are the cancer fighting chemical found in marijuana.

      • B

        its not supposed to be a cure. Chemo isnt a cure. its just a way of relieving the pain

        • Mike

          Um, actually, chemotherapy for cancer is intended to be a cure. It has nothing to do with pain relief and may, in fact, leave you so miserable you quit eating. That’s when the magic of marijuana is most obvious, as it can restore appetite and limit nausea.

          While it’s true that evidence of marijuana curing cancer is anecdotal AFAIK at this time, there are numerous studies noting the anti-cancer properties of marijuana. Where marijuana may come into play is in preventing cancer from starting, rather than curing it after it has begun.

          • Engineer Olsen

            go check a study done by Harvard University on hemp oil given to lab rats induced with lung tumors. Know your stuff

        • Jeff is an Idiot

          Jeff, you’re an idiot….

      • jeff

        well in concentrated forms such as wax or hash it dose cure cancer on a cellular level :)

        • Mike

          Technically, what it does is attack cancer cells per the study I believe you’re referring to. That’s a good thing, but still a long way from “curing” cancer. What can be done at the cellular level in a test tube is a long way from curing cancer in the body.

          I appreciate the enthusiasm, but I think we’re better off if we stick to facts about cannabis, rather than engage in the same sort of appeals to mythology that the prohibitionists depend upon.

  • Dylan

    Medical marijuana helped my grandfather get through his chemo, it should be an available medicine to all cancer and other illnesses across the nation.

  • ActivistCat

    The smartest thing any state could possibly do is pass legislation for medical use of cannabis. Cannabis is such an awesome antibiotic it can kill methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus and disrupt the progression of prion diseases such as Mad Cow and Creutzfeld-Jakob disease. According to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, currently there is “No FDA-approved treatment for a prion disease.”

    Thousands of deaths each year in the U.S. are caused by MRSA. A recent study shows hemp fabric stops the spread of Staph and MRSA. In light of that, with the Staph and MRSA epidemic in most U.S. Hospitals wouldn’t it be wise to use hemp fabric for all hospital bedding, towels, clothing and curtains?
    Topical use of a cannabis liniment is far more effective than any pain medication and does not get one high but it isn’t legal to use. It would prevent addiction because one never ingests anything. A few sprays – NO HIGH – NO PAIN – NO ADDICTION, except to living without pain.End the pharmaceutical chemical slavery NOW. Cannabis should be legal to grow in every backyard on the planet. The making of crimes out of health matters has proven a dismal reckless failure. Scientific studies have proven Cannabis has medical value, is safe and effective for many health ailments. The discovery of the endocannabinoid system and evidence of health benefits consuming cannabis raw, which has no psychoactive properties, should leave cannabis as a dietary food. Cannabis is one of the original medicines and still safer than pharmaceutical chemicals which kill people daily and have every day in the 100 years they have been used

  • jessica

    As a resident of Wisconsin suffering from debilitating pain fron psoriatic arthritis and fibromyalgia, medical marijuana would be a god-send! I’m in so much pain all the time and I’m only 22! I used to use marijuana and it helped tremendously but quit due to fear of being caught. Hopefully this law passes and we can all get some relief!

    • John William Pavlekovich

      spark up , no jury of peers would convict you ( ask for a jury trial)

  • medcannabis1

    here is a program for Veterans that we are developing for the Warfighter community

  • Jacob

    Medical marijuana helped my mom beat cancer after multiple failed attempts.

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  • legalize

    can you post a link to where you can track progress on the government website

  • Joseph Anderson

    how can we help get this thing passed?

    • Jenifer Valley

      Talk to your local Representative and Senator at State level. Then talk to the Healthcare committees who are implementing the Afordable Care Act aboput how medical marijuana addresses the three primary drivers of Healthcare costs (pain managment, chronic disease managment, and End-of-Life care) and improves outcomes so that patiewnts are able to reduce prescription drug use, doctor visits and hospital visits. Get involved in elections for major offices and go to fundraiser parties and talk to people there about he need for home gardens as well as production licensure for a dispensary system. Keep your story short, and get the message to them that medical marijuana can make the Affordable Care Act actually affordable.

  • Brad Ameen

    my cousin has Cyclic Vomiting Syndrome he has up to 100 seizures daily. I have read much about cbd based medicines helping drastically reduce the the risk of having a seizure or even stop them completley. i really hope wisconsin does the right thing and legalizes medical marijuana, i really do believe it would save my cousin.

  • Dave Vincent

    If some of the higher ups in the government weren’t making so much money off of it it would be legalized already not just for medical think about it alcohol kills how many people year proven fact marijuana kills how many people year look into it and then you tell me what it all comes down to is if you can bring it in give it to a pre selected person make a lot of cash bust the little guys make a lot more money, by charging them with fines more money court cost more money by sending them to prison you’d probably keep it illegal to

  • Jenifer Valley

    There is an excellent movie called “What if Cannabis Cured Cancer?” you can find it on the youtube and it answers the question in detail.
    I personally cured my Stage 4 cancer (ok, I have only been clear for 3 years, so I can’t really say cured for another 2 years, but its gone). I used cannabis extract oil. smoking did not get rid of the cancer, but it did help me gain 10 pounds in bone weight and survive treatment.

  • Joe

    They need to realize its just a plant, mi is legal wi should be too.

  • Linda

    It’s about time that this state gets onboard with the 20 or so other states that have medical marijuana laws. As a chronic pain sufferer I would rather take my chances with pot than the pain meds I take now which have got to be doing a number on my liver. I thought we were a progressive state.

  • Witnesser

    We have to do this. Locking people behind bars for marijuana is absurd. There is no threat to public safety, other than operating big machinery, including cars. Home use is mostly harmless, especially compared to alcohol. I would rather live in a state full of smokers than a state full of drinkers. Drunks are way more dangerous in everyway in WI.

    • Earl Cameron

      It’s not even that dangerous to drive or operate machinery, A study was done in Colorado where impairment was only seen at something like 4000 times the legal driving limit. It’s not like toxic alcohol, which shuts down parts of the brain. It actually stimulates the brain. Alcohol is a toxin, Cannabis is not. I have driven hundreds of miles while high, wouldn’t think of doing the same while drunk, as that would just be crazy.

  • Ken C. Kuhrt Jr.

    I left the state of Wisconsin so i could obtain my medical marijuana licese. My body really can’t handle prescription pills. I am a incomplete quadriplegic since. 08/17/04. I plan on coming back because that’s where i was born. I plan on attending ctu to get my certification on how to grow and make edibiles.

  • Vicky

    It needs to be legalized for autism. My son could so benefit from this.

  • John William Pavlekovich

    Instead of arguing , light a fire under your reps ass to get this before the council and passed before any more needless suffering

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  • dos santos

    We have taken notice what reps are against it and what reps are for it. Come election time, this is a major issue that we the people will vote accordingly. (This is coming from someone who has voted republican in every way possible, me and many others are going to change our votes to the people who listen to us.) The research is there, CBD helps many people with many ailments. Educate yourself before saying something ignorant.

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