The Ohio Cannabis Rights Amendment
Q & A about the revised language – Version 4.0 (constructive suggestions are most welcome)
What has been revised? (from the version 3.5)
At the beginning of the year, new rights-based ballot language concerning the therapeutic and industrial uses of Cannabis in Ohio was presented for comment. With appreciation to those who took the time to offer input, the following changes to the Amendment were inspired by comments received:
The agreed-upon title for the Amendment that best reflects its intent and purpose in the least words is “The Ohio Cannabis Rights Amendment.”
A number of comments pertained to the selection process for the initial board of the Commission in Section 3(B). The main problem seemed to involve the appointment of public sector employees by a private sector Committee to Represent the Petitioners. The solution was for the Committee to appoint the initial Commissioners from the private sector (voters, farmers, and medical and mental health practitioners) and for the governor make those initial selections from the public sector (law enforcement officer and representatives of the Department of Agriculture and the Civil Rights Commission). If the governor fails to make those three appointments in a timely manner (within 60 days of the Amendments passage), the Committee is authorized to make them for him/her.
Initial appointments of the two registered Ohio voters, the two Ohio farmers, the licensed medical practitioner and the licensed mental health professional shall be selected by the Committee to Represent the Petitioners for this Amendment. Initial appointments of a full time law enforcement officer, the member to represent the Ohio Department of Agriculture and the member to represent the Ohio Civil Rights Commission shall be selected by the governor or, if not appointed within sixty (60) days of an affirmative vote by the electors of the state, by the Committee to Represent the Petitioners. Succeeding terms of the Commission shall be three years in length.
The timeframe for implementing the regulations and licensing and permitting systems under Section 3(C) seemed too long. With input concerning this timing in a locale where medical marijuana is now legal, the timeframe was reduced to 180 days from passage of the Amendment – about a half a year. To ensure that the Commission acts in the public interest, all of its meetings will be open to the public and a matter of public record, and it will be required to issue an annual report concerning its activities during the prior year.
The Board of the Commission shall be duly constituted and conduct its first official meeting within ninety (90) days of an affirmative vote by the electors of the state. Regulations and licensing and permitting systems shall be implemented by the Commission within one hundred and eighty (180) days of an affirmative vote. Meetings of the Commission shall be open to the public and a matter of public record. The Commission shall issue to the General Assembly an annual report concerning its activities during the prior year.
“And their staff” was added to Section 4 (B) to ensure that all operating expenses of the Commission and the Department of Agriculture as they pertain to hemp are funded by the programs put in place by the Amendment.
All operating expenses of the Commission, of the Department pursuant to Section 3(E), and of their staff shall be funded by the reasonable fees and fines adopted to implement the activities authorized by this Amendment. Fines, regulatory fees, license fees and permit fees shall not be cost prohibitive for eligible residents, farmers or providers.
How can one help the campaign?
The Ohio Rights Group, formerly the Ohio Medical Cannabis Association, is a rapidly growing group of political activists determined to change Ohio to allow patients to use cannabis for therapeutic uses, as well as allow for the development of a vast array of Hemp Industries in the buckeye state. We need you to join this cause: Volunteers to help gather signatures to place this measure on the ballot. Donors who can spare $5, $25, $100 or more to fund this important work. Online activists like those proficient in spreading our message on Facebook, Twitter and other social networking sites. Writers for blogs posts and letters to the editor in support of our cause.
Please check our website and Facebook pages for details.
The Ohio Cannabis Rights Amendment v.4.0 – Q & Ahttps://docs.google.com/file/d/0B-y8u29mB2VYa0pYVXBwN1JhZEU/edit