October 01, 2018, Oklahoma
Oklahoma’s medical marijuana program has reached a new height last week when for the first time in the history of the state, a cannabis plant has been sold legally. It’s a major milestone for the state that is still ironing out the details of its nascent medical marijuana program.
A troubled timeline of medical marijuana legalization in Oklahoma
All things considered, it’s been a momentous year for cannabis reforms in the Sooner State. After years of efforts, cannabis advocates of the state succeeded in having the question of MMJ legalization in the public ballot. It was held in June and the State Question 788 of MMJ legalization won after getting 56 percent vote while 43 percent voters opposed the measure.
Nevertheless, the measure got hit by several issues almost immediately after the voter’s approval. For instance, the state’s influential medical association started calling for the ban on smokable marijuana. Oklahoma’s State Board of Health complied with the demands of doctors and banned the consumption of marijuana in smokable form. In the same time frame, the board also pushed for many other restrictions. This includes a prior pregnancy test for female MMJ patients and the requirement for dispensaries to have a permanent onsite pharmacist.
This immediate inclusion of several restrictions by the board got a strong backlash from cannabis businesses and advocates. And that didn’t confine to just verbal lambasting. In the following days, two separate lawsuits were filed against the state administration.
Gov. Mary Fallin eventually assumed the role of an arbitrator and advised the health board to come up with a set of revised regulations. After deliberations and some back and forth, the board came up with a revised set of rules free of many restrictions. Mary signed that revised MMJ bill in August.
First MMJ plant is sold
According to new MMJ rules, patients can buy up to six marijuana seedlings and mature plants at any given time. Last week, the first MMJ plant transaction took place at a newly-opened dispensary located in Osage County, Oklahoma. According to local media reports, the first buyer of the plant was a Vietnam veteran who uses medical cannabis for the treatment of Post-traumatic stress disorder.
Recreational legalization in Oklahoma
The medical marijuana program is now heading in the right direction. But things are not the same when it comes to the question of adult-use legalization. Nevertheless, the movement for recreational legalization has also experienced some action this year. At one point, it seemed like the advocates would succeed in gathering enough signs for the petition to add the question of recreational legalization in November ballot.
Even an advocacy group Green the Vote claimed that they had collected a required number of signatures. However, it turned out that the group was overstating the numbers. The group was required to collect at least 123,724 signatures but it fell short by nearly 50,000 votes. So, for now, voting on the question of recreational legalization has been delayed for an indefinite time.
Marijuana stays in the news, and Alice is always ready to keep us updated. A world traveler and lover of freedom, Alice knows what is going on, no matter where she roams. She specializes in marijuana legalization stories across the globe, with up to date... [read more]