Arizona Passes Medical Marijuana Law

Posted on November 17 2010

Proposition 203 legalizing medical marijuana in the state of Arizona has passed by a slim margin. However, the law is one of the most restrictive in the nation.
Election officials determined the Arizona medical marijuana “MMJ” law passed by the slimmest of margins, 4,341 votes out of approximately 1.6 million votes cast. After certification, the law requires the state to accept applications for medical marijuana MMJ clinics within 120 days.
However, the law is very restrictive. Pharmacies get first crack at the licenses. There can only be one non-profit clinic per ten licensed pharmacies. At least one non-profit clinic can be opened in each county no matter whether pharmacies elect to sell MMJ. That makes the first non-profit license issued in Phoenix very valuable.
A pharmacy license is expensive to obtain. Hence, many pharmacies will likely decline the opportunity to sell MMJ. Part of the problem is they must grow what they sell, placing the pharmacy in a new industry. Even though MMJ is legal under state laws, it remains illegal under federal laws. That could place a pharmacy in violation of federal laws, thus putting its license at risk.

Under Proposition 203, Arizona requires patients obtain a prescription from a licensed doctor, another problem. Doctors are often reticent to prescribe MMJ for fear of disciplinary action because MMJ is not on a list of FDA approved medications.  Other states only require a recommendation, not a prescription.
Arizona law enforcement must respect the law. However, they likely will insist on strict adherence. A person who falls outside of the statutes, even by accident, is subject to severe criminal penalties including years in prison.
Meanwhile, persons who are sick with cancer, AIDS and some other ailments say MMJ gives them relief they are unable to find with traditional medication. They anxiously await for the clinics to open.



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  • R. Eagle Levy: May 03, 2011

    I was recently approved as a recipient/cultivator of the Medical Marijuana Program in Arizona but the Arizona Dept. of Health has been a wall of ignorance when it comes to finding out information on purchasing seeds legally. Where can I obtain marijuana seeds in Arizona to avoid the feds from getting all puffed up about interstate trafficking? The Health Dept hinted at I must find my own connection and they were not responsible.

  • marijuana seeds: March 10, 2011

    I like it because i was seeking for such type of info.

    I hope it benefits all one who land up here.

    Thanks for sharing!!

  • joe: December 02, 2010

    arizona’s choice of words to describe the proposition 203 won’t fly. the use of the word prescription will cause MORE fed. friction

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