Problems Persist with Now Public Medical Marijuana Policy

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The Legislature has 90 days to either approve, disapprove or amend the final draft rules and regulations. You can read the rules and regulations attached below. 

Guam – The A.G. has approved the final draft of the rules and regulations for medical marijuana as well as the governor and the rules are now with the legislature. Now that the rules and regs are public, some residents have voiced concerns over the fees for starting a dispensary and over patient safety to name a few.

One of the notable differences from the first draft of the medical marijuana rules and regulations is the limit on the number of dispensaries. In the newest draft, the number of dispensaries allowed on Guam has been removed. James Gilan, Public Health Director says this was a strategic move by the AG to shield Guam from potential lawsuits.

 

“Arizona is in some difficulties with that because they had allowed for home cultivation outside of a certain number of miles outside a dispensary. They’ve been getting lawsuits from people who are living just two or three feet away from the limit so they were being sued for that,” said Gilan, in an earlier interview.

 

But even with the cap being lifted, some argue, because of the fees, only someone with an extraordinary amount of capital can start a dispensary.

 

Andrea Pellicani, while talking on the ‘One Free Re-Phill’ on K57, said, “[The fees are] $30,000, which is $5,000 less than the last draft which is still, unsustainable. You’re talking about how much in licensing and permit fees gets handed down to the patient, how are these businesses going to compete with the illicit market? we don’t even have a lab component so you cant even throw out, ‘at least its safer’, we won’t even know that.”

 

Pellicani’s main worry is that marijuana’s black market will continue to prosper over medical marijuana because the black market doesn’t have to compete with Guam’s high fees, which are ultimately passed down to the patient.

 

Then there’s the issue with patient security. Currently, patients are required to register to receive medical cannabis, including a copy of your most recent ID. The argument is that patients who are prescribed other drugs, such as Percoset or Vicodin are not required to give up as much privacy as future medical marijuana patients.

 

“It does not encourage safe patient access because it limits the access to people who are willing to go in and show their face and do whatever it is and get this and send their card and send their picture and what not which we think is completely unnecessary,” said Pellicani.

 

Gilan says because Medical Marijuana is still federally illegal and is still a schedule 1 drug, so they need to know who is a qualified patient.

 

Meanwhile, according to Guam Law, the Guam Legislature may approve, disapprove or amend any rule within 90 calendar days from the date of filing with the legislative secretary. The legislative secretary received the rules and regulations on May 10.

 

 


AG_JT_Guam_Medical_Marijuana_Rules_Final_Changes_and_Formatting_Including_TOC_and_EIS_4-28._2.docx