Updated: 5/1/2017 – The Temple City Council voted on the proposed marijuana ordinance that resulted in a 2 to 2 tie. The mayor is not allowed to break a tie on ordinances. Council member Penny Ransom said she intends to revisit the issue after the June 20th special election to replace a deceased council member. From FOX 5 News.
Temple GA: On April 3rd the City of Temple will begin the process to amend the city’s marijuana ordinance that would remove jail time and reduce the fine for one ounce or less of cannabis.
Following in the footsteps of the cities of Clarkston and Atlanta, council member Penny Ransom will present the proposed ordinance for the first reading at the next scheduled council meeting. A public hearing and a vote will come over the next four weeks.
State law allows cities to create an ordinance for one ounce or less of marijuana with up to $1000 fine and 6 months confinement. State law allows up to 12 months confinement. It does not stipulate a minimum penalty.
A hearing will be held on April 13 to allow citizens and stakeholders to provide information and ask questions.
Georgia CARE Project (Campaign for Access Reform and Education) began the City by City Initiative when they proposed an ordinance change in Athens-Clarke County in 2015.
Last July, the City of Clarkston passed a reform ordinance that removes incarceration and allows for a citation and up to a $75 fine. City officials expressed interest in reducing the harm state marijuana laws create on those caught with personal use amounts.
The key features to the ordinance is removal of an arrest record and elimination of jail time.
Georgia CARE director James Bell said the public no longer wants to incarcerate citizens for marijuana possession and cities are willing to consider a less Draconian approach to the issue.
“We are encouraged that various cities in Georgia are willing to debate the issue”, Bell said. “We hope as more cities reform their ordinances it will send a message to state legislators that Georgians no longer want to create criminals out of those who use cannabis. But, we understand there is still a desire by some to show disapproval of cannabis use.”
Georgia CARE will continue to reach out to cities and help educate councils on the reform process.
oday, the second hearing on Georgia House Bill 65 (Medical Cannabis) was held in Atlanta. The Medical Cannabis Working Group chaired by Rep. Allen Peake invited a Georgia doctor to tell her story about how cannabis oil has improved her 17 year old autistic son’s life.
The committee voted to move the bill forward to the House Judiciary Non-Civil Committee for further consideration.
HB-65 expands the current law (HB-1) by adding additional medical conditions for which cannabis oil (CBD/THC) can be used and for other purposes.
State Rep. Allen Peake, R-Macon, chairs the working group and wrote House Bill 65, which will be the vehicle for their recommendations.
“I thought today was very productive,” said Peake, after the meeting. The working group is a special committee formed this year to work on the complexities of getting a substance to Georgians that’s prohibited under federal law. The roughly 1,200 Georgians on the state medical cannabis registry for diagnoses like severe seizure disorders can posses a liquid made from medical cannabis, though there is no legal way to obtain it. The working group also recommended that people with medical cannabis cards from other states should be allowed to posses that liquid.
The AJC is reporting that Sen. Unterman will not hold a hearing on House Bill 722, a medical marijuana bill that Gov. Deal and some legislators opposed. A house committee stripped the bill of the in-state grow provision and added a DUI limit for impairment. It did pass out of the House Non-Civil Judiciary Committee and was placed in the Senate Health and Human Services Committee where Sen. Unterman is chairman.
AJC – A bill that would expand the list of medical conditions that could be treated on Georgia’s medical marijuana law has stalled in committee, after Senate Health and Human Services Chairwoman Renee Unterman, R-Buford, said Monday that she will not schedule a hearing on it before the Legislature ends work March 24.
House Bill 722 would have added HIV/AIDS, epidermolysis bullosa, post-traumatic stress disorder, Tourette’s syndrome and other disorders and illnesses to the list of qualifying medical conditions eligible for the state’s cannabis oil program, which became legal last year.
Unterman said she felt the push to expand the list needed more work and discussion than time would allow during the session.
“I met with some of the families and I’ve committed to continue working on it with them, and that’s what I told them,” Unterman said. When asked if she expected to schedule a hearing, she said: “No, it’s not coming up.”