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Colorado THC/DUI Bill Losing Momentum

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Advocates for medical cannabis patient rights scored a victory yesterday when the Senate Judiciary committee voted to gut HB 11-1261, the THC/DUI bill. The Senators concluded that the issue of whether marijuana use causes driving impairment and the best way to determine whether a person is impaired or not needed much further study before a bill could be passed. They amended HB 11-1261 to remove all the language about creating a new THC/DUI per se standard for THC in whole blood, and changed the bill to request a state task force study the issue more thoroughly.

The bill will now be sent to Appropriations, and then to the Senate floor for two votes (Second and Third Readings). The Senate votes could happen this week.

Thanks to everyone that called and emailed the Senate Judiciary Committee. Your efforts had the intended effect. But your job is not done. At any time, the THC/DUI per se language could be put back into the bill, so we have to keep our educational efforts up with phone calls and emails. The target for education now is the full Senate. See below for ACTION ALERT.

THANKS TO WESTWORD
Special thanks to Westword and their reporter William Breathes, who had his blood drawn to prove that a patient would be above the 5ng/mL limit even when sober. His THC blood content, after 16 hours of fasting, was 13.5 nanograms, well over the 5ng limit. Yet he was completely unimpaired. Through much difficulty with the testing labs, Westword was able to obtain the results only minutes before the hearing yesterday, allowing this test result to be used in the Committee’s decision that the bill needed more research.

WW story on William Breathes’ blood test results:
http://blogs.westword.com/latestword/2011/04/thc_blood_test_pot_critic_william_breathes_3_times_over_limit_sober.php

WW story on HB1261 victory for patients:
http://blogs.westword.com/latestword/2011/04/thc_driving_bill_on_hold_william_breathes_blood_test.php

4/20 VICTORY PARTY
Victories in cannabis politics are few and far between. We will be celebrating this victory on 4/20, all day starting at 9am in Civic Center Park in Downtown Denver for the annual Denver 420 Rally and Celebration of
International Cannabis Day.
http://www.facebook.com/420rally

ROB CORRY LEGAL SEMINAR TONITE
There is still space for tonite’s (4/19) legal seminar on the DOR rules. Please enroll online, or pay in cash at the Holiday Inn Denver-Central Hotel, 4849 Bannock St., Denver, CO. The seminar is from 6:30 to 9:00pm.
Cost is $150/person or $250 for 2. This is a CTI Fundraiser: http://www.cannabistherapyinstitute.com/classes/

OTHER STORIES ON YESTERDAY’S VOTE
The Denver Post
Panel pushes stoned-driving bill back for study (4/18/11)
by John Ingold
http://www.denverpost.com/breakingnews/ci_17876309

Associated Press
Colo. marijuana DUI bill amended to become study (4/18/11)
by Ivan Moreno
http://www.denverpost.com/news/marijuana/ci_17871424

ACTION ALERT
Here is what you can do:

1) Email the Senate Judiciary Committee and say THANK YOU for changing HB
1261 to study the issue more thoroughly.

2) Email the full Senate and ask the to support HB1261, only if the bill promotes research on the issue and is not re-amended to put back the THC/DUI per se criminal language.

EMAILS TO COLORADO SENATE
Colorado Senate Judiciary Committee
angela.giron.senate@state.co.us,
steve.king.senate@state.co.us,
linda.newell.senate@gmail.com,
jeanne.nicholson.senate@state.co.us,
ellen.roberts.senate@state.co.us,
mark.scheffel.senate@state.co.us,
kevin@kevinlundberg.com,
lucia.guzman.senate@state.co.us,
morgan.carroll.senate@state.co.us,

The Rest of the Colorado Senate (excluding Judiciary Committee)
irene.aguilar.senate@state.co.us,
bob.bacon.senate@state.co.us,
betty.boyd.senate@state.co.us,
greg@gregbrophy.net,
bill.cadman.senate@state.co.us,
joyce.foster.senate@state.co.us,
kevin.grantham.senate@state.co.us,
ted.harvey.senate@state.co.us,
rollie.heath.senate@state.co.us,
mary.hodge.senate@state.co.us,
senatorhudak@gmail.com,
cheri.jahn.senate@state.co.us,
mike.johnston.senate@state.co.us,
keith@keithking.org,
mike.kopp.senate@state.co.us,
senatorlambert@comcast.net,
shawnmitch@aol.com,
john.morse.senate@state.co.us,
senatorrenfroe@gmail.com,
gail.schwartz.senate@gmail.com,
brandon@brandonshaffer.com,
nancyjspence@gmail.com,
pat.steadman.senate@state.co.us,
lotochtrop@aol.com,
jean.white.senate@state.co.us,
suzanne.williams.senate@state.co.us,
info@cannabistherapyinstitute.com

Click here for more ways to contact the General Assembly:
http://www.cannabistherapyinstitute.com/advocacy/contact.colorado.state.legislature.html

DONATIONS REQUESTED
Donate to CTI so we can continue to provide you with Action Alerts and updates. If you are a patient, ask your dispensary owner to contribute to CTI. Participation in cannabis politics will protect patients. Less than 4
dispensaries actually showed up at the hearing on 4/18 to testify. If MMC-applicants can’t participate in politics, they need to support organizations that can do it for them:
http://www.cannabistherapyinstitute.com/donate.html

CTI EMAIL LIST
Get on our email list for updates:
http://www.cannabistherapyinstitute.com

 

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