Ohio was in the marijuana reform spotlight for all of 2015 due to a marijuana legalization initiative that was on the ballot. That initiative failed by a very wide margin. It is looking doubtful that there will be an initiative on the 2016 ballot since there simply isn’t enough time to collect enough signatures before the deadline. But there is still some home for reform in Ohio in 2016. Yesterday media outlets in Ohio reported that the Ohio Legislature is planning a series of bipartisan hearings to discuss legalizing medical marijuana. Per News Net 5:
The Ohio Senate and House of Representatives will announce a series of bipartisan hearings on medical marijuana as early as this week, sources tell newsnet5.com.
The concept of recreational marijuana will not be included in the discussions, according to the source.
It will be very interesting to see how the hearings go. The question is not just if Ohio will legalize medical marijuana, but also what that medical marijuana legalization would look like. Will there be home cultivation allowed? What conditions will be on the list of qualifying conditions? Will there be dispensaries, and if so, how many? What is the barrier to entry to become a grower and/or dispensary owner? I just hope these hearings don’t lead to a CBD-only model with no way to legally access any medicine at all.