Butte Legislator Reveal Looming Crackdown on Medical Marijuana

Butte Legislator Reveal Looming Crackdown on Medical Marijuana


State Rep. Jon Sesso, a Democrat from Butte, on Friday revealed to the Montana Bar Association a looming crackdown on medical marijuana by the Legislature.

Sesso, the minority leader of the House, who spoke to a lawyers’ group in Butte, said that while there will be no absolute repeal of the 2004 Medical Marijuana Act, he expects significant reforms to be implemented.

He said, “The abusers will be on notice, probably in the next 30 days. If you aren’t legitimately sick, you are not going to be able to use (medical marijuana).”

Sesso also said that legislators are aware that the merits of the law are being overridden by its abuse, which is why it is necessary to reform its provisions.

The Senate is already tackling numerous medical marijuana law reform bills and many more are working their way through the House. Sesso said he expects a bill that combines some of the elements to be enacted this legislative session. However, specifics on how the final products will appear remain unknown.

Sesso said, “Today’s report will be essentially obsolete tomorrow.” He also said, “24 hours means a lot in the legislative session and things are moving as we speak.”

Changes, such as those put forward by House Bill 19, have already been enacted. It puts medical marijuana under the Clean Air Act and prohibits smoking the same in enclosed public places.

Nevertheless, the Legislature is considering a number of other methods in tinkering with the law.

Among the bills being debated right now include some provisions that make it illegal for convicted felons to become caregivers, as well as prohibiting the use of medical marijuana by persons who are under probation.