Governor’s budget would add 12 compassion centers, decrease plant count, add acute pain as qualifying condition….

Here are most of the proposed changes in the Governor’s budget for the MMj Progam. If  the budget passes in its current form, we would see the following:  increase in the number of compassion centers by adding 12 retail outlets, decrease in plant count from 12/12 to 8/8 for patients and caregivers with one patient (16/16 for caregivers with 2-5 patients), increase patient possession limit from 2.5 ounces to 3 ounces ( caregivers with one patient would also increase to 3 ounces, caregivers with 2-5 patients would increase to 6 ounces), add acute pain to list of qualifying conditions with 6 month limitation (could use compassion centers, could not grow or appoint caregiver), caregivers with more than one patient would have to show patient “necessity” to be delineated in future DBR regulations (unless family member), patients who are growing would have to justify the appointment of a caregiver (details would be in regulations), protections for cardholders to gift to other cardholders would be prohibited, marijuana “emporiums” would be prohibited, a new category of “manufacturers” who could purchase from cultivators to create cannabis products (edibles, topical, etc) to sell to compassion centers, prohibit MA and CT physicians from signing patient applications, and MA and CT patients would be able to use RI dispensaries. There will be public hearings on the proposed changes at a later date to be announced. The Governor’s budget is House Bill 7200, the MMj changes are contained in article 17 which starts on the bottom of page 345.   http://webserver.rilin.state.ri.us/BillText18/HouseText18/H7200.pdf

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GROW CLASS STARTING

RIPAC Grow Classes are a fraction of the cost of other classes in New England. We  make these classes as accessible as we possibly can to patients and their caregivers who take the classes for all the right reasons.  Our classes are exclusive.  We will not teach you to grow unless you are legal to grow.  We are committed to preserving the integrity of the MMj Program, so you must be a licensed patient or caregiver. This class is not about growing “weed” or “pot”.  It is about growing medicine for qualified patients. Whether you are new to the MMj Program and have never seen a plant or whether you have some experience, please join us.  You will be glad you did. Mike, our instructor, is the best. Not only is he an amazing grower, he has taught some of the best growers in RI.  Here’s a sample:

“I starting growing because my wife was a MMj patient. She was in the hospital constantly before I learned to produce the strains that she needed. Mike was my teacher. He has an unbelievable ability to explain things. Because of him, my wife has effective medicine and compassion centers asked me to grow for them. People consider me an expert. That is because I learned from Mike. He is a real expert who knows how to teach”. CP, a patient and caregiver from the Providence area

Classes are at Growin’ Crazy on the following Wednesday evenings, 7pm– 9pm:

October 4   Introduction.  Grow room set up, environment

October 11   Selection of containers, mediums, nutrients, water & ph requirements

October 18    Seed germination, transplanting seedlings, cloning, transplanting clones

October 25     Pests and diseases, prevention, treatment of infected plants

November 1  Vegetative growth, vegetative nutrients, transplanting, topping & training

November 8   Flowering cycle, flowering nutrients, patience

November 15 Harvest, drying, curing

November 22   Holiday (night before Thanksgiving) no class

November 29  Making concentrates safely – bubble hash (with ice), butter & tinctures

 Current MMj license must be brought to each class with 25 dollar donation. 

We suggest registering for all 8 classes (but that is not required).

 Contact  joanne@RIpatients.org with questions or to register. You can also register at Growin’Crazy Grow Shop at 93 Kingstown Rd. Wyoming RI. Take 95 South to exit 3A.  Follow 138E for one mile. Growin’ Crazy is on your right.  (401) 284-0810    

REGISTER SOON.   SPACE IS LIMITED

ONLY ONE WEEK TO FESTIVAL

Thanks to the generosity of Growin’ Crazy, HydroEarth, the Bell Street Chapel & Summit Compassion Center, the Medical Cannabis Festival will take place next Saturday, Sept 23, 11am-6pm. 3 Bell Street in Providence. This is a time for the community to come together, have some fun, win some door prizes and celebrate 11 years of the RI MMj Program. There will be thousands and thousands of dollars worth of prizes donated by our vendors and supporters.  Get a bargain from Organic Grow Hut or Puffins Smoke Shop, just to name a couple. You might win a gift card from the Slater Center, a gift certificate from Good to Grow, or a voucher for a free doctor evaluation at THC Clinics or Green Script in North Kingstown.  Artists will be there with unique items that honor the cannabis palnt. This year we will be honoring Carly Beauvais Iafrate, the volunteer attorney who successfully sued to protect RI MMj patients from employment discrimination. Please come by to thank her for her hard work on our behalf. Speaking of lawyers, our legal team from Barton & Gilman, are representing RIPAC against the town of Smithfield over their zoning ordinance.  They will have a table at the Festival to talk about legal questions you may have.  Mike, our expert grower, will be there to provide advise and announce a new series of Grow Classes starting October 4.

One of the best things about our annual Festival is seeing faces we haven’t seen for awhile and hearing how medical cannabis has made a difference in your health and life. So please come by and let us know how you are doing. We have more than 18,000 patients in the Program now and we would love to see some new faces, too.  Next Saturday.  Bring all your friends. You don’t need a MMj card to get in (although you will need a card to win a gift card for a compassion center). Admission is only 5 dollars. Put it on your calendar now!

RIPAC in Court vs. Smithfield

RIPAC and two Smithfield patients and the ACLU sued Smithfield over the town’s MMj ordinance. The ordinance prohibits caregivers from growing in the town, reduces patient plant count to two mature and two seedlings, requires town inspections of those patient grows, prohibits co-ops, compassion centers,  and cultivators. The hearing before Judge Licht took place yesterday. Judge Licht asked the town’s attorney many of the same kinds of questions that so many of you have you asked: Will they also have an ordinance for people who grow tomatoes? Will they try to regulate other types and amounts of medications that Smithfield residents can use in Smithfield? As our attorney, John Meara  said: “It’s the town assuming the role of physician and usurping the authority the state statute gives the department of business regulation and department of health, and reaching into the medicine cabinets of the citizens of Smithfield and preventing them from using medical marijuana in line with the state statute.” 

Judge Licht is expected to issue his decision on September 25.