Arkansas Bill Amending Medical Cannabis Law Sent to Governor

Legislation that amends Arkansas’ medical cannabis law has been passed through the state’s legislature and sent to Governor Asa Hutchinson for consideration.

House Bill 1400 was passed by the House of Representatives on March 17th with a unanimous 88 to 0 vote; six days later it was passed by the Senate 31 to 1. Today the measure was “Correctly enrolled and ordered transmitted to the Governor’s Office.”

The proposed law would amend the Arkansas Medical Marijuana Amendment of 2016 to prohibit smoking of marijuana:

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Hemp Bill Passed By Arkansas House Committee

A bill to allow hemp to be cultivated in Arkansas has been passed by its initial committee.

House Bill 1778 was passed by the House Committee on Agriculture, Forestry and Economic Development with a unanimous voice vote.

According to its official text, the proposed law “is intended to assist the state in moving to the forefront of industrial hemp production, development, and commercialization of hemp products in agribusiness, alternative fuel production, and other business sectors, both nationally and globally, and to the greatest extent possible.”

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Arkansas Senate Rejects Measure to Ban Smoking of Medical Cannabis

An effort by Arkansas lawmakers to undermine a voter-approved initiative that legalizes medical cannabis has failed in the Senate.

In November Arkansas voters approved Issue 6 with 53% voting in favor. The constitutional amendment legalizes the possession and use of medical cannabis, including a system of licensed dispensaries. Today the Senate voted 15 to 11 to reject Senate Bill 357, a measure filed by Representative Jason Rapert (D) that would have made changes to this law, banning the actual smoking of medical cannabis. This is the second time this year the Senate has rejected such a measure.

A motion that would have allowed the bill to come up again at a later time failed unanimously, 11 to 0. This thankfully puts the bill to rest, at least for the time being.

Read moreArkansas Senate Rejects Measure to Ban Smoking of Medical Cannabis

Arkansas Legislature Unanimously Passes Marijuana Rescheduling Bill

Legislation to allow the Arkansas Department of Health to reschedule marijuana once there’s a change in federal law has passed the state’s full legislature.

House Bill 1402, which has no immediate impact on Arkansas marijuana laws, was passed by the Senate with unanimous 31 to 0 vote. The vote in the House of Representatives was also unanimous, 85 to 0. The measure now goes to Governor Asa Hutchinson (R), who can sign it into law, allowing it to become law without his signature or veto it (if he does veto it the legislature can override it with a 2/3rds vote).

Under the proposed law, Arkansas Code § 5-64-201(d), “concerning the duties of the Director of the Department of Health concerning the scheduling of a controlled substance”, would be amended to add a new subdivision to read as follows:

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Arkansas Court Removes Medical Cannabis Legalization Initiative from November Ballot

By Reuters

Arkansas CourtThe Arkansas Supreme Court struck down on Thursday one of two proposals in the November election to allow for the use of medical marijuana in the state, saying the proposal did not receive the required number of signatures to be on the ballot.

Voters in the Nov. 8 election in Arkansas will still be able to vote on a separate measure that would allow for the regulated use of marijuana for certain medical conditions, where a state commission oversees plant growth and marijuana distribution.

Read moreArkansas Court Removes Medical Cannabis Legalization Initiative from November Ballot

100 Days Until 5 States Vote on Legalizing Cannabis, 3 on Legalizing Medical Cannabis

States Vote on Legalizing CannabisIn exactly 100 days – on November 8th – the 2016 general election will take place, and voters in six states will have the opportunity to legalize cannabis for everyone 21 and older; voters in two additional states will be given the ability to legalize medical cannabis.

Here’s a look at these eight initiatives:

1. Nevada

Question 2 would legalize the possession of up to an ounce of cannabis, as well as the personal cultivation of up to six cannabis plants, for those 21 and older. Cannabis retail outlets – supplied by licensed cultivation centers – would also be legalized. (This is all similar to the other state’s initiatives).

Read more100 Days Until 5 States Vote on Legalizing Cannabis, 3 on Legalizing Medical Cannabis

Arkansas Marijuana Possession Laws

Arkansas Marijuana Possession Laws:

 

Less than 4 oz (first offense)MisdemeanorIncarceration: 1 year or lessFine: $2,500
1 – less than 4 oz (subsequent offense)FelonyIncarceration: 6 years or lessFine: $10,000
4 oz – less than 10 lbsFelonyIncarceration: 6 years or lessFine: $10,000
10 – less than 25 lbsFelonyIncarceration: 3* – 10 yearsFine: $10,000
25 – less than 100 lbsFelonyIncarceration: 5* – 20 yearsFine: $15,000
100 – less than 500 lbsFelonyIncarceration: 6* – 30 yearsFine: $15,000

 

Arkansas Marijuana Possession Laws

For further information on Arkansas marijuana laws – including penalties for distribution and cultivation – click here. For recent updates to Arkansas marijuana possession laws and other Arkansas-related stories, click here.

Residents in These 8 States Are Set to Vote on Marijuana Legalization This November

By Sean Williams, The Motley Fool

ohiovoteThis is going to be a transformative year for the United States. Not only are we set to vote in a new president for the first time in eight years this November, but we could also see the most rapid expansion of marijuana ever, with eight states now set to vote on recreational or medical cannabis initiatives or amendments this fall.

What’s at stake

The expansion of the cannabis industry was initially put in motion 20 years ago when California approved a compassionate use law for medical marijuana. Today, half of all U.S. states have approved a medical marijuana law. The two most recent approvals came from Pennsylvania and Ohio, which used the legislative process to pass medical cannabis laws.

Read moreResidents in These 8 States Are Set to Vote on Marijuana Legalization This November

Medical Cannabis Legalization Initiative Placed on November Ballot in Arkansas

arkAn initiative to legalize the medical use and distribution of cannabis will appear on this November’s ballot in Arkansas, according to Secretary of State Mark Martin.

According to Martin, Arkansas for Compassionate Care (ACC) submitted well more than 77,516 valid signatures, the number required to put their initiative to a vote of the people. ACC is the group behind a 2012’s Issue 5, a medical cannabis legalization initiative that was narrowly defeated in the general election, receiving 48.56% of the vote.

Read moreMedical Cannabis Legalization Initiative Placed on November Ballot in Arkansas

AR: Enough Signatures Submitted to Put Medical Cannabis Legalization on November Ballot

Arkansans for Compassionate Care, a group working to place an initiative to legalize medical cannabis on this November’s ballot in Arkansas, has announcedarkansas that they’ve submitted over 110,000 signatures to do just that. This is well more than the 67,887 required to put the measure to a vote, though it won’t be officially place on the ballot until the state verifies that enough of the signatures are valid (from registered Arkansas voters).

“Over the past two years, we’ve talked to tens of thousands of voters across the state,” says Campaign Director Melissa Fults. “Most Arkansans agree it is time to give sick and dying patients safe and legal access to medical cannabis when their doctors think it’s the best treatment option for them, and they will have the opportunity to do it this November.”

Read moreAR: Enough Signatures Submitted to Put Medical Cannabis Legalization on November Ballot