House bill makes changes in Iowa’s medical marijuana program

DES MOINES — A bill to let more potent medical marijuana products be sold in Iowa has cleared initial review in the Iowa House — but the bill also would limit the total amount of THC patients could be sold over a 90 day period.

Representative John Forbes, a Democrat from Urbandale, says some patients are already taking more THC over a three-month period than the bill would allow.  “And it’s having positive impacts on people’s quality of life,” Forbes says, “and how we can pull back and do this to patients here in the state of Iowa — it’s very disconcerting to me as a legislator and a pharmacist.”

Governor Reynolds vetoed a bill last year after members of a state advisory board raised objections. This bill would implement the board’s latest recommendation — a limit of four-and-a-half grams of THC over 90 days.

Republican Representative Jarad Klein of Keota says he’ll keep discussing the THC limit with the advisory board and the governor.  “Absolutely going to be very closely tied with the board because I know that’s where the governor is,” Klein says. “We know that 25 is too high. We know that 4.5 may be too low for some people, so we’ll see if there’s a middle ground to be found.”

The bill is now eligible for consideration in a House committee. Under the state’s medical cannabis program, there are licensed growers, producers and sellers of medical marijuana to Iowans with a limited number of medical condition like M-S & chronic epilepsy.