Uncategorized Tallian lays out next steps for marjiuana policy legislation

Tallian lays out next steps for marjiuana policy legislation



January 23, 2012

As you know, I brought forward the subject of Marijuana policy in Indiana in the 2011 legislative session.  This may have been the first time this subject was ever raised in the state legislature.  I requested a study of policy to be held during summer study sessions.    And, in fact, we did have such a study session, allowing a great number of people to testify.  This year, I introduced SB347 that had a number of provisions, including:

  • eliminate felony possession of marijuana altogether;
  • decriminalize possession of less than 3 ounces, and make it an infraction only;
  • make possession of more than 3 ounces no more than a misdemeanor; and
  • create an exemption for research institutions.

In addition, I have amendments to propose:

  • allow for production of industrial hemp; and
  • allow for a “free pass” for anyone who had a physician’s recommendation for medical marijuana use.

On Tuesday, January 24, 2012, this bill will be given a hearing.  However I was only able to secure a hearing with the understanding that the bill will not be voted on this year.  Keep in mind:  this is an election year.  Many of the people who would otherwise support this bill are concerned that they will not support it during a year when they are up for re-election and face stiff primary challenges by persons who may not be sympathetic to this issue.   I do not want to risk a “no” vote.  No vote is better than a recorded vote of “No” for the future viability of a bill.

Many of you may be disappointed.   Keep in mind:  I live in a world of political reality.  I am taking the steps necessary to keep this moving, even if it is by Slow Time.

I will continue to work on this issue.  All the polls that we have show a very strong support to change Indiana’s criminal laws on this issue.

Karen Tallian

To keep up to date on this issue in the future, follow http://INSenDems.wordpress.com/tag/marijuana/ and @INSenDems