Maine: Voters To Decide Next Week On Medical Marijuana Expansion Measure

Augusta, ME: Voters will decide on Tuesday whether to approve a statewide ballot proposal that seeks to amend the state’s decade-old medical marijuana law.

If enacted, Proposition 5: the Maine Marijuana Medical Act, would expand existing state law by establishing a confidential patient registry, and by allowing for the creation of non-profit state-licensed nonprofit dispensaries to assist in the distribution of medical cannabis to qualified patients.

To date three states – California, New Mexico, and Rhode Island – allow for the establishment of medicinal cannabis dispensaries.

If passed, Prop. 5 would also expand the list of qualifying conditions for which a physician may recommend medicinal cannabis.

The proposal’s proponents gathered over 55,000 signatures from Maine voters to place the issue on the 2009 ballot.

In 1999, 61 percent of state voters approved the physician-supervised use of medical marijuana. However, the law did not establish a state identification registry for qualified patients, nor did it address regulating the distribution of medical marijuana.

Under state law, patients with a doctor’s permission may legally possess up to two and one-half ounces of marijuana and/or up to three mature marijuana plants for medicinal purposes.

For more information, please contact Allen St. Pierre, NORML Executive Director, at (202) 483-5500, or visit: http://www.mainepatientsrights.org.