Alabama Cannabis Commission Meets for the First Time
We’re one step closer to the day when you’ll be able to get an Alabama Marijuana Card, as the Alabama Medical Cannabis Commission (AMCC) has held its first meeting and scheduled its second.
The creation of the AMCC was mandated by the passage of SB 46, Alabama’s medical marijuana law. The commission, which was finalized in July, will oversee licensing growers, dispensaries, and patients.
The AMCC met in the Capitol building, but will have to find a permanent meeting space in the near future.
“Ladies and gentlemen make no mistake. The task before you is big,” Governor Ivey told the commission, according to the Opelika Observer. “You have your work truly cut out for you. The task before you is providing legal use for medical cannabis. We simply have to get this right.”
“We have a long way to go and a short time to get there,” commission chairman Dr. Steven Stokes told the commission. “We are going to have to meet at least once a month.” Stokes said that meetings will be “the second Thursday of each month at least through the first of the year until we get organized and up and going.”
The commission now has a little more than a year to design a medical marijuana program from soup to nuts. However, the commission has far less time to complete the first big task on its agenda.
January 1, 2022: The Deadline for Physician Certification Procedures
The first big task in front of the commission is establishing a process for certifying physicians to recommend medical marijuana to patients.
Those procedures must be in place by New Year’s Day 2022, only a handful of months from now.
According to SB 46, whatever procedures the commission creates for certifying physicians must include requiring participating doctors to complete specialized training in working with medical marijuana.
Stokes assigned a subcommittee to work on physician licensing.
Commission Must Also Create Process for Licensing Growers by April 2022
According to Huntsville Fox affiliate WZDX, Stokes told the commission that because all of the marijuana used in the program has to have been grown in Alabama, that the commission would have to have issued licenses to growers and processors by April of 2022, so that they can plant in April and May.
There can be no more than nine licensed growers according to SB 46, and all of them have to be farmers and have lived in Alabama for at least fifteen years. At least two of the licensed growers must be minorities.
Stokes assigned another subcommittee to begin working on the process of licensing growers.
And Still More Work Must be Done by September 1, 2022
And there is still more preliminary work to be done if the commission is to have the state’s medical marijuana market up and running by the September 1, 2022, deadline established by SB 46.
The commission must establish a system for licensing at least four processors, one-fifth of which must be majority owned by an individual who is a minority or by a group composed of mostly individuals who are minorities. The Commission must consult with the Department of Agriculture and Industries in determining the exact number of cultivator licenses to issue.
First Preliminary Administrative Steps Taken
In addition to establishing subcommittees to oversee physician and grower licenses, in their first meeting the commission discussed necessary steps it would have to take in order to complete its tasks efficiently and on time.
It was decided that the commission would begin advertising for administrative staff, finding office space for that staff, and looking for a permanent meeting location. The commission must also find an executive director, and Stokes appointed a subcommittee to begin that search.
The next meeting of the commission was scheduled for Wednesday, Aug. 25 at 1 p.m. in the Statehouse room 200. The commission is expected to begin its normal meeting schedule on the second Thursday of each month after that.
The AMCC has Gotten Started; Why Don’t You?
Medical marijuana in Alabama may still be a year away, but the AMCC has taken its first steps towards getting ready for it. Why don’t you do the same?
While you still have to wait for medical marijuana, you don’t have to wait to start the ball rolling on getting your Alabama Marijuana Card. Reserve an evaluation with one of our compassionate doctors, and we’ll book an appointment for you just as soon as Alabama’s medical marijuana market is up and running.
Not only will you save $25 off the cost of your appointment, but you won’t even have to leave home to find out if you qualify for a marijuana card. You and your new doctor will meet virtually via your smartphone or computer in a telemedicine appointment. You’ll discuss your condition and your treatment options from the comfort and safety of your own home, taking the first step towards the relief that only medical marijuana can offer.
Doctors Who Care. Relief You Can Trust.
At Alabama Marijuana Card, our mission is helping everyone achieve wellness safely and conveniently through increased access to medical marijuana. Our focus on education, inclusion, and acceptance will reduce stigma for our patients by providing equal access to timely information and compassionate care.
If you have any questions, call us at (833) 781-5633, or simply reserve a medical marijuana evaluation to start getting relief you can trust today!
Check out Alabama Marijuana Card’s Blog to keep up to date on the latest medical marijuana news, tips, and information.