We attended the subcommittee for HSB 164 today. News footage by Steffi S Lee is below:
HSB 159 CANNABIDIOL (Judiciary) Fry (C), Hager, Kressig
HSB 164 CANNABIDIOL (Public Safety) Klein (C), Hager, Kressig
One day there was hope for a Republican lead medical cannabis bill and the very next day it's already over. Below is an article from RadioIowa.com
Cannabis oil bill ‘shot through with holes,’ and stalls
FEBRUARY 24, 2017 BY O. KAY HENDERSON
A bill that could have expanded the use of cannabis oil for a variety of “debilitating medical conditions” has stalled in the Iowa House.
“At this time, if it isn’t dead, it sure as hell is shot through with holes,” says Republican Representative Clel Baudler of Greenfield, the bill’s sponsor.
Baudler had hoped the bill would clear a House committee yesterday, but Baudler says he could only muster support for the bill from three of the 11 Republicans who serve on the Public Safety Committee. Baudler says “disappointed” is the tame way to characterize his reaction after working on the details in the bill for months.
“I don’t know what happened from last year to this year,” Baudler says.
The state law that decriminalized possession of cannabis oil for the treatment of chronic epilepsy is set to expire this summer. Baudler and House leaders expect another bill will pass to simply lift the expiration date, so patients — mainly children — who’ve used cannabis oil to reduce their seizures may continue with the treatment.
Baudler’s original bill would have set up a state-monitored system to grow marijuana, manufacture cannabis oil and dispense it in Iowa. The legislature also included the liklihood Iowans who suffer from a variety of debilitating illnesses might have been able to get a prescription for cannabis oil.
Original Article can be found here: http://www.wfaa.com/news/richardson-father-risks-freedom-to-promote-cannabis-treatments-for-his-daughter/411515817
You can follow Kara's story on facebook here:
Richardson father risks freedom to promote cannabis treatments for his daughter
Marie Saavedra, WFAA 12:07 AM. CST February 22, 2017
RICHARDSON -- A few times a month, Mark Zartler commits a crime that helps his daughter who cannot help herself.
17 years ago, Christy Zartler gave birth to twin girls.
"When they came home, Keeley, her twin, came home first," said Christy. "Three days Kara followed her."
From there, they began the difficult, years-long task of learning how to treat Kara’s Cerebral Palsy and severe Autism. There are a slew of her pills on their kitchen counter. Antipsychotics and enzymes and sleep aids. Still, few things helped fight off the worst of her symptoms.
Kara is self-injurious. She often hits and punches herself in episodes that can sometimes go on for hours.
"Pretty much on a daily basis we have some sort of episode," said Christy.
So, when Mark found the one thing that could stop his daughter, he made a video to show the world. He posted it on his Facebook page. In it, Kara is seen punching herself at home. Mark then is able to put a mask over her nose, filled with vaporized cannabis. It takes six deep breaths, and she starts to calm down. He then holds her hands down for the next three minutes, and after that time, she sits calmly by herself, no longer violent.
"The video is the truth," said Mark. "That’s typical of what we see."
A neighbor first suggested years ago that cannabis could ease Kara’s symptoms. Mark then found that by grinding marijuana buds, and heating them to 410 degrees Fahrenheit, it created the vapor that serves as an immediate rescue response to his daughter’s most violent behavior.
They were just as surprised.
"For several years we were in fear of using it, trying it, giving it to her, having it," said Christy.
But now there’s no fear for the Zartler's who risked everything by posting the video of Mark illegally treating Kara that more than 12,000 people (and counting) have seen. It's also a risk talking to News 8.
"I got to the point where I looked at the law and said the law’s not going change until somebody gambles," said Mark.
In his post, Mark asks that Texans call their state Senators demanding a public hearing on Senate Bill 269. It would expand the access of patients with debilitating illnesses to use medical marijuana.
For Kara, that law would make moments of calm come legally. And if showing what works for her puts Mark in jail, so be it.
"If we want to make a difference for ourselves and other kids like Kara, somebody has to take the risk," he said.
He’s another father who’ll do anything for his daughter.
News 8 reached out to several State Senators from North Texas and Governor Greg Abbot for their take on Senate Bill 269's chances in the legislature but did not receive any comments back about the issue.
Read the article below or the full text here: http://qctimes.com/news/state-and-regional/iowa/bill-would-extend-expand-iowa-s-medical-cannabis-program/article_a672c135-9a5a-5e1d-a44f-b09277c00cf1.html
Bill would extend, expand Iowa’s medical cannabis program
A three-person panel of state legislators advanced a bill that would extend the current program, which permits the use of a medicinal byproduct of the marijuana plant for treatment of intractable epilepsy but is set to expire in July. It also would expand it to permit the product to be grown and sold in Iowa and create a process by which more ailments would be covered.
“I’ve worked on this issue for some time,” said Rep. Bob Kressig, D-Cedar Falls."The bill is actually a good step in the right direction."
The bill was introduced in the Republican-controlled Iowa House by Rep. Clel Baudler, R-Greenfield, chairman of the public safety committee through which the bill is tracking, and was managed Wednesday by Rep. Jarad Klein, R-Keota.
Advocates for medical cannabis have pressed state lawmakers to expand the current program, which was started in 2014 and permits use but makes it difficult for Iowans to access the product. Advocates have had a persistent presence at the Capitol in the past few years, sharing success stories of people who have seen a dramatic reduction in seizures and pain after using medical cannabis.
“Erin Miller (of Des Moines), whose son Abram benefited from the current bill, is now 600 days seizure-free on (medical cannabis) oil. And she wanted me to express that to you all,” Tom Duncan of Jefferson told lawmakers at Wednesday’s hearing.
Opponents of the proposal cite its break from federal laws, which do not recognize cannabis oils and extracts as approved medicinal products.
However, 28 states and the District of Columbia have comprehensive public medical marijuana and cannabis programs, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. The previous federal administration said it would not pursue action against states with medical and recreational marijuana laws, and Klein said Wednesday that state lawmakers have reached out to the new administration to seek clarification on the issue.
The bill also provides an avenue for more ailments to be covered by the program. Currently, medical cannabis may be used only to treat intractable epilepsy; the bill would allow for more maladies to be added if recommended by the University of Iowa’s medical college and approved by state lawmakers.
Advocates say medical cannabis also can be beneficial in treating post-traumatic stress disorder and some forms of cancer.
“It’s very important for us that people have safe and legal access,” said Sally Gaer of West Des Moines, co-founder of a medical cannabis advocacy group whose daughter has a rare form of epilepsy.
Lawmakers on the panel noted the legislation does not permit the recreational use of marijuana and allows only for use of a byproduct with such low potency that users cannot get high.
“This is such low THC (the hallucinogenic element in marijuana) that you can’t get high on it. This is not recreational, and folks need to understand that,” Klein said. “This is about medicine. This is about helping folks.”
The legislation was approved by the three-member panel — Kressig, Klein and Rep. Kristi Hager, R-Waukon. The bill is now eligible for consideration by the full committee. Klein said he expects the bill to be approved by the committee, which would keep it eligible for consideration this session ahead of a key legislative deadline at the end of next week.
Clel Baudler, R- Greenfield, filed House Study Bill 132 to expand Iowa's limited medical cannabis bill that is set to repeal July 1. Without a new program to take it's place, Iowa's patients are getting nervous.
This bill would allow for growth, distribution and dispensing within the state's borders and leave it up to the University of Iowa's Carver College of Medicine to decide on which conditions to add to qualifying conditions.
However, it caps the THC percentage at just 3% which may not help many of the people this bill is intended to help. This bill also leaves cannabis classified as a Schedule 1 controlled substance.
The Des Moines Register wrote an article about it as well. You can read that here:
House Study Bill 132
Today, Reps. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA), Congressman Jared Polis (D-CO), and Don Young (R-AK) formed the Congressional Cannabis Caucus to develop and promote sensible cannabis policy reform and work to ease the tension between federal and state cannabis laws.
An excellent article came out in yesterday's Des Moines Register sharing that "Eighty percent of Iowa adults now want marijuana legalized for medical purposes" and that it "is backed by at least three out of four Iowans from all income groups and those who live in any of Iowa's four congressional districts.
Please read the full article here:
This blog is intended to be a collection of news pieces from Iowa and across the country in which cannabis was the subject matter.