Measure Attempts to Put ‘Compassion’ Back into State’s Compassionate Use Act
(TRENTON) — Assemblyman Reed Gusciora (D-Mercer), a prime sponsor and one of the most vocal advocates for the New Jersey Compassionate Use Medical Marijuana Act, on Monday issued a multimedia package on his legislation contesting Gov. Christie’s draft regulations for implementing the Compassionate Use Act.
The Gusciora legislation (ACR-151) formally declares draft regulations created by the Christie administration as being inconsistent with the legislative intent behind the law. The measure, a legislative resolution that does not require the governor’s signature, passed the Assembly Monday by a vote of 48-22-7. The measure would give the commissioner of the state Department of Health and Senior Services 30 days to revise or withdraw the proposed rules for implementing the Compassionate Use Act.
If the administration does not comply, the Legislature may hold public hearings to discuss invalidating the proposed rules and may subsequently adopt a second resolution invalidating the proposed regulations.
The multimedia package consists of a video press release of Assemblyman Gusciora discussing the resolution and audio and a transcript of same.
The audio file is available upon request.
A transcript of Assemblyman Gusciora’s comments is appended below:
“I felt strongly that patients should be able to have whatever medications their physicians deem best.
“The medical marijuana was passed and signed into law by then-Governor Corzine. Unfortunately, Gov. Christie’s proposed regulations, we feel, go a little too far and make the law more strict, so that patient access then becomes compromised.
“At the end of the day, through the regulations, we took the ‘compassion’ out of the ‘Compassionate Use Act.’
“My bill fixes the governor’s proposed regulations and brings back more in line with legislative intent. We’d like to see six alternate treatment centers, to start out. We’d also like to take out the restrictive restrictions on the dosage levels and also the strength of the THC itself. And bring down the timeline. We’d like to see patients have access to the medical marijuana much sooner than the governor envisions.”