After years of discussion regarding marijuana law in New Jersey, Governor Murphy is looking to make changes. Recently, legislation was passed by the Governor in order to make medical marijuana more accessible for patients throughout the state. Continue reading below to learn more.
What is the Bill?
The new bill, known as The Jake Honig Compassionate Use Medical Marijuana Act, was named after a 7-year old with cancer who used medical marijuana during treatment. This passed in an effort to expand medical marijuana access for patients with diagnosed medical conditions. The new requirements are as follows:
- Issuance of additional dispensary permits
- Revises certain requirements concerning patients and primary caregivers in addition to requirements for physicians to authorize qualifying patients
- Improves the applications, ownership and operational requirements for alternative treatment centers
- Authorization period extends from 90 days to one year
- Edible forms of marijuana will be more available to patients in need
- The sales tax on medical marijuana will be phased out
Changes to the Law
Once in effect, the bill will make the following changes:
- Raise the monthly limit from two ounces to three ounces. The limit will be raised to three ounces for 18 months, then the maximum amount will be determined by regulation. Terminally ill and hospice patients will not be subject to a monthly limit.
- Authorization period extended from 90 days to one year. Health care practitioners can issue up to a one-year supply.
- Edibles for adults as well as minors.
- Phase-out of sales tax. It will go down to 4 percent in July 2020, 2 percent in July 2021, and will be terminated in July 2022.
- Physician assistants and advanced practice nurses can authorize medical marijuana.
- Employment protections for patients, prohibiting employers from taking adverse employment actions against employees based on their status as medical marijuana patients.
- Multiple caregivers per patient.
- Reciprocity with other states’ medical marijuana programs. Qualifying patients in other states can be considered in New Jersey for up to six months.
- Price lists for dispensaries will be required to post on their websites and cannot deviate from those prices.
- Home delivery to improve patient access.
- Creation of a Cannabis Regulatory Commission. The commission consists of five members appointed by the Governor, with one each upon the recommendation of the Senate President and the Speaker.
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