Here is a quick update on marijuana legislation in New Hampshire. Tuesday there were a number of hearings in the Senate concerning proposed marijuana laws. The two most positive concern House Bills (HB) 157 and 160.
HB 157 allows patients who suffer from moderate to severe chronic pain to qualify for a prescription for medical marijuana. This Bill passed 4-1 through the Senate health and Human Services Committee.
HB 160 also passed through the Committee (5-0). It allows people suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder to qualify for medical marijuana.
We hope to see this Bill sail through the Senate and become laws soon.
HB 640, the decriminalization Bill that Cohen & Winters helped draft, continues to make its way through the Senate. This Bill was overwhelmingly approved by the House and Governor Sununu has indicated he will sign it if it reaches his desk. The New Hampshire Chiefs of Police have been largely absent during the debate on this Bill until recently. They have persuaded Senate Majority Leader Jeb Bradley to offer amendments that would gut this spirit of this Bill. The Union Leader recently reported on the proposed amendments. Now is the time to contact your local Senator and urge him, or her to support this Bill in its present form. Remember that the Police have a financial incentive to continue to treat possession of small amounts of marijuana as a crime. The Legislature is supposed to reflect the will of the people, not the will of the police. We hope HB 640 will be passed by the Senate soon.