Legislative Update from District 1B House Rep. Deb Kiel

Submitted by Deb Kiel
Crookston Times

Legislative Update

Medical Marijuana Hearing

In the Health Finance and Policy committee this week, we heard several bills aimed at changing our medical marijuana laws. HF 907 would allow people removed from the medical marijuana program to re-enroll after a year. It also expands protections for people in the program by preventing retaliation against them, as well as allowing people to use their enrollment in a medical cannabis program as a defense against certain drug offenses. HF 1023 and HF 675 would reschedule natural marijuana from Schedule 1, which means it has no medically recognized uses and a high risk of abuse, to Schedule 2, which means it has a high risk of abuse but with medically recognized uses. HF 907 and HF 1023 were both passed out of committee to the Public Safety and Criminal Justice Reform committee.

HF 813 allows the use of plant material in the medical program and allows enrolled patients to smoke the cannabis they receive. The argument given for this bill was that it would significantly reduce costs for manufacturers and those savings would be passed on to patients, since it is expensive to convert the plants to oils, vaping liquids, or pills. This bill was laid over for possible inclusion in a future bill.

New Bills

I recently introduced several bills. HF 1236 is a local bonding bill that would provide $600,000 to the city of Fosston for construction, furnishing, and equipping the Pine to Prairie Museum. I look forward to fighting for this local project as session continues.

Yesterday, I introduced HF 513, which would recognize a right to carry a firearm without a permit as long as that person is legally allowed to own one. The bill does not change laws around who is legally allowed to own a firearm. It also establishes an optional permit to carry.

I am also planning to introduce a bill that would grant paid leave to people who take time off from their jobs to donate organs. Organ donation is a noble act, and granting paid leave will allow more people to donate to those who desperately need it.

Please Contact Me

It’s an honor and privilege to work for you at the Capitol. Don’t hesitate to contact my office at any time this session to share your thoughts, concerns or ideas. I am here to serve you!

Deb Kiel