Kentucky "Cannabis Freedom Act" Summary

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Kentucky Cannabis Freedom Coalition·Saturday, December 12, 2015

Cannabis Freedom Act Summary

Section 1

(New Section of KRS Chapter 245)

Definitions

Section 2

(New Section of KRS Chapter 245)

Personal possession, use, and cultivation limits

Persons 21 years and older may:

Possess up to 1 ounce of cannabis on their person;

Cultivate up to 5 cannabis plants;

Store excess cannabis lawfully grown for personal use at the location where it was cultivated; or

Transfer up to 1 ounce of cannabis to another person age 21 or older without remuneration

Possession exemption for persons under 21 if recommended by a licensed physician

Section 3

(New Section of KRS Chapter 245)

Prohibition on smoking cannabis in public

Maximum penalty: $100 fine

Section 4

(New Section of KRS Chapter 245)

Prohibitions on access to retail cannabis facilities,

Persons under 21 years of age shall not:

o Enter retail cannabis facilities to purchase cannabis or cannabis products;

o Possess, purchase, or attempt to possess or purchase cannabis or cannabis products;

o Misrepresent their age or use false identification to induce an illegal sale of cannabis or cannabis products; or

o Remain on any premises that sells cannabis or cannabis products

Licensees, their agents, or employees are prohibited from permitting persons under 21 years of age from remaining on any premises where cannabis and cannabis products are sold.

o Maximum penalty: Class B misdemeanor

Section 5

(New Section of KRS Chapter 245)

Prohibition on unlawful possession of cannabis

Maximum penalty: $250 fine

Section 6

(New Section KRS Chapter 245)

Personal cultivation requirements

Person who chooses to cultivate for personal consumption must take reasonable precautions to ensure that any cannabis or cannabis plants are secure from unauthorized access and access by persons under twenty-one years of age.

Persons shall only cultivate cannabis for personal consumption on property that they own or with the consent of the person in lawful possession of the property.

o Maximum penalty: $500 fine

Section 7

(New Section KRS Chapter 245)

Prohibition on unlawful cultivation of cannabis (ULCC) with the intent to sell or transfer it for valuable consideration ULCC of 11 or more cannabis plants

o Maximum penalty: Class D felony

ULCC of 6-10 cannabis plants

o Maximum penalty: Class A misdemeanor

ULCC of 5 or fewer cannabis plants

o Maximum penalty: Class B misdemeanor

ULCC of six or more cannabis plants creates a presumption that unlawful cultivation was for sale or transfer

Section 8

(New Section of KRS Chapter 245)

Department of Alcoholic Beverage and Cannabis Control (ABCC) to promulgate administrative regulations to implement various aspects of Act within 180 days of the Act becoming law.

Section 9

(New Section of KRS Chapter 245)

ABCC to create licenses to operate the following cannabis-related entities:

Cannabis cultivation facility;

Cannabis processing facility;

Cannabis testing facility; or

Retail cannabis facility.

Licenses created pursuant to this section shall cost $5,000 and be valid for 12 months from the date of issuance

Section 10

(New Section of KRS Chapter 245)

Licensure requirements

Applicant must pay nonrefundable $100 application fee which will be applied to their licensing fee if a license is issued to the applicant

ABCC shall:

Create uniform license application form;

Issue a license to an applicant unless:

o The applicant has been convicted of crime which would qualify them as a violent offender;

o The applicant falsifies information on the application for a license; or

o The applicant has had a previous license issued by ABCC revoked within the 12 months prior to the reapplication.

Section 11

(New Section of KRS Chapter 245)

Excise tax imposed on licensees operating cannabis cultivation facilities selling or transferring cannabis to either a cannabis processing facility or a retail cannabis facility.

Effective January 1, 2017:

$30 per ounce on all cannabis flowers

$10 per ounce on all parts of the cannabis plant other than the flowers

$10 per immature cannabis plant

Reporting requirements

Department of Revenue may prescribe forms and promulgate administrative regulations to collect taxes created under this section

Section 12

(New Section of KRS Chapter 245)

Creates a revolving trust and agency account from licensure, renewal, and administrative fees Account to be used for the enforcement of the Act by ABCC

Section 13

(New Section of KRS Chapter 245)

The Kentucky Responsible Cannabis Use Program (KRCUP) fund is created as a restricted fund

The KRCUP fund is comprised off all the excise tax revenue collected under Section 11 of the Act and all the sales and use tax revenue collected on cannabis and cannabis products.

The proceeds contained in the fund are to be distributed according to the following formula:

30% of funds to go the public school fund to support education excellence in Kentucky (SEEK);

20% of funds to go to the Kentucky Department of Education for scholarships based on socioeconomic need for students to attend public institutions of postsecondary education in Kentucky;

20% of funds to go to the Office of Drug Control Policy to dispense grants to substance abuse treatment programs that employ evidence-based behavioral health treatments or medically assisted treatment;

15% of funds to go to the Kentucky Law Enforcement Council to dispense grants to county and local law enforcement agencies to buy protective equipment, communications equipment, and training; and

15% shall be deposited into the general fund.

Section 14

(New Section of KRS Chapter 245)

$500 Civil penalty for each violation of KRS Chapter 245

$1000 Civil penalty for failing to maintain written tax records and reports required by the Department of Revenue

Section 15

(New Section of KRS Chapter 245)

Corporate and individual liability for violations of KRS Chapter 245

Section 16

(New Section of KRS Chapter 245)

Cannabis or cannabis products which are held, owned, or possessed by any person other than those authorized by KRS Chapter 245 is declared contraband.

The ABCC can dispose of contraband cannabis and cannabis products using the same procedures and protocols that they currently use for contraband alcoholic beverages.

Section 17

(New Section of KRS Chapter 100)

Prevents local political subdivisions with zoning power from:

Using their zoning power to institute a moratorium on cannabis-related entities;

Using their zoning power to discriminate against cannabis-related entities by treating them differently from other similar entities;

Using their zoning power to impose more stringent security requirements than those required by ABCC; or Imposing additional fees in excess of what other applicants seeking to operate a business are charged.

Section 18

(New Section of KRS Chapter 65)

Prevents county and local governments from instituting de facto or de jure moratoriums on cannabis related entities.

Section 19

(New Section of KRS Chapter 311)

Allows any licensed physicians acting in good faith to recommend cannabis or cannabis products to their patients.

Physicians who recommend cannabis or cannabis products to patients under the age of 18 must obtain parental consent and a second recommendation from another licensed physician.

Provides civil, criminal, and licensing immunity to physicians who, in good faith, recommend cannabis or cannabis products.

Section 20

(Amends KRS 12.020)

Renames the Department of Alcoholic Beverage and Cannabis Control

Establishes the Division of Cannabis

Section 21

(Amends KRS 241.010)

Amends definition of “board” and “department” to reflect the addition of cannabis

Section 22

(Amends KRS 241.015)

Renames the Department of Alcoholic Beverage and Cannabis Control

Section 23

(Amends KRS 241.020)

Empowers the Department of Alcoholic Beverages and Cannabis Control to regulate traffic in cannabis and cannabis products.

Creates the Division of Cannabis to administer the laws in relation cultivation, processing, testing, and sale of cannabis and cannabis products.

Section 24

(Amends KRS 241.030)

Adds one appointed position to the Alcoholic Beverage and Cannabis Control Board to act as director of the Division of Cannabis.

Section 25

(Amends KRS 2.015)

Amends the age of majority statute in regards to cannabis.

Section 26

(Amends KRS 218A.010)

Removes the definition of marijuana from Kentucky’s Controlled Substances Act.

Section 27

(Amends KRS 218A.050)

Removes marijuana, tetrahydrocannabinols, and hashish from the list of Schedule I controlled substances.

Section 28

(Amends KRS 218A.510)

Removes references to marijuana and hashish from the definition of drug paraphernalia.

Section 29

(Amends KRS 260.850)

Removes industrial hemp from the definition of cannabis.

Section 30

(Amends KRS 600.020)

Includes cannabis offenses in the definition of status offense action under Kentucky’s Juvenile Code.

Section 31

(Amends KRS 610.010)

Grants jurisdiction of juvenile cases involving cannabis to either the juvenile session of District Court or the family division of the Circuit Court.

Section 32

(Amends 630.020)

Adds cannabis offenses to list of status offenses which have to be adjudicated in juvenile court.

Section 33

(Amends KRS 218A.276)

Removes obsolete reference to marijuana statutes that would be repealed if this Act becomes law.

Section 34

(Amends KRS 630.120)

Prevents juveniles who are adjudicated guilty of cannabis offenses from being committed to the Department of Juvenile Justice for detention (mirrors alcohol and tobacco offenses).

Section 35

(Amends KRS 131.650)

Removes obsolete reference to a taxing statute which would be repealed if this Act becomes law.

Section 36

(Repeals KRS 138.870, 138.872, 138.874, 138.876, 138.878, 138.880, 138.882,138.884, 138.885, 138.886, 138.888, 138.889, 218A.1421, 218A.1422, 218A.1423)

Section 37

(Short Title: Cannabis Freedom Act)

INFORMATION SOURCE LINK

UPDATED LINK TO THE KENTUCKY LEGISLATURE WILL BE POSTED WHEN AVAILABLE!

KY Senator files "Cannabis Freedom Act" rolling medicinal and recreational use together in one hit

By Brad Bowman, Published: December 12, 2015 3:56PM

Clark talking about cannabis in a legislative committee meeting. Photo courtesy of the Legislative Research Commission.

Democrat Sen. Perry Clark of Louisville has advocated for the legalization of medical marijuana since the last legislative session to this summer at Mensa’s Annual Gathering where he cleared the smoke and myths surrounding marijuana. Friday he filed a bill rolling medical and recreational use in one big hit.

Clark filed the “Cannabis Freedom Act” which would regulate the use of cannabis just as the state regulates alcohol.

Touting the benefit of pot over pills and curbing opioid addiction for patients who use marijuana to overcome pain and problems from illness like multiple sclerosis, Clark has talked extensively in the Senate and legislative committees about the benefits and regulation of marijuana.

After the Mensa event this summer, Clark had told The State Journal he wanted to have a meaningful conversation about the senseless prohibition of the plant, which Clark said, has been financially backed by alcohol and tobacco companies blocking the legislation in other states.

The “Cannabis Freedom Act” would end the prohibition on marijuana cultivation, possession and selling the substance in regulatory framework similar to Colorado.

Quick takeaways on the act include: it would only be available to residents 21 and over;

• residents could possess up to 1 ounce on their person;

•cultivate up to 5 plants;

• store an excess of cultivated cannabis for personal use where it was cultivated or transfer 1 ounce to another person 21 or older without remuneration.

• persons under 21 could possess cannabis if it was recommended by a licensed physician;

• no smoking cannabis in public places

Other parts of the regulator framework would include only residents 21 and over could enter a retail facility for the purchase of cannabis or related products.

Clark’s bill would maximize unlawful possession at $250 and a $500 fine for illegal growing marijuana on a property without the property owner’s permission.

“It is abundantly clear to me that cannabis, while being much less harmful, should be treated the same as alcohol,” Clark said in a release. “The Cannabis Freedom Act is an outline on how to tax and regulate the sale of marijuana to adults 21 and older in Kentucky. It is time for this discussion in our Commonwealth.”

The act’s regulatory framework has a three-tier licensing system which separates cannabis cultivators, processors and retailers independently to “prevent monopolization and vertical integration,” a component different from the framework proposed in Ohio.

Clark said the tax revenues would be in a restricted fund to increase SEEK funding for the state’s public schools and provide scholarships to Kentucky students who qualify for needs-based  assistance to both public and post-secondary schools in Kentucky.

Revenues would also help fund evidence-based substance abuse treatment programs, provide grants to local law enforcement agencies to purchase protective equipment and provide additional revenue to the state’s general fund.

During the 30-day short session, Clark brought up the medicinal studies and medical benefits of cannabis almost every day in the Senate.

Follow political reporter Brad Bowman at @bradleybowman for all state government and political news.

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Ky. senator files ‘Cannabis Freedom Act’

4:42 p.m. EST December 11, 2015

MEXICO-MARIJUANA-GREENHOUSE

FRANKFORT, Ky. (WHAS11)Kentucky Senator Perry B. Clark (D-Louisville) pre-filed an act that would legalize and regulate cannabis in a similar way the Bluegrass State handles alcohol.

The bill would repeal Kentucky’s prohibition on marijuana cultivation, possession and sale. Instituted in its place would be a "regulatory framework designed to promote public safety and responsible cannabis consumption by persons over 21 years of age."

RELATED: Ohio could be first to legalize medicinal and recreational pot

Clark states that cannabis should be treated in a similar light as alcohol.

“It is abundantly clear to me that cannabis, while being much less harmful, should be treated the same as alcohol,” said Clark. “The Cannabis Freedom Act is an outline on how to tax and regulate the sale of marijuana to adults 21 and older in Kentucky. It is time for this discussion in our Commonwealth.”

RELATED: Founder of ‘Church of Cannabis" won’t use pot at service

Highlighted in the announcement is that tax dollars generated from the new commerce would go to supplement Kentucky’s public schools, post-secondary institutions and scholarships.

Portions of the revenue generated would also go toward "evidence-based substance abuse treatment programs."

“This is a common sense proposal that moves Kentucky positively forward,” Clark said.

The proposed bill will be considered during the 2016 Legislative Session, which convenes Tuesday, Jan. 5th, 2016.

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Cannabis myths: Kentucky senator speaks out

 

 

Sen. Perry Clark talks at Mensa event at Galt House in Louisville

By Brad Bowman, Published: July 3, 2015 8:09AM

Democratic Sen. Perry Clark spoke at the Mensa Annual Gathering in Louisville on Wednesday in an effort to clear the smoke about myths surrounding cannabis.

Clark was one of several presenters invited to the four-day Mensa event at the Galt House.

The organization asked Clark to speak about the myths beginning in the early 1900s surrounding cannabis, hemp and the continued propaganda from opponents of cannabis legislation. 

With the 2016 legislative session less than six months away, Clark said he hopes to have meaningful conversations about legalizing cannabis with fellow lawmakers where baseless propaganda has kept a stigma on the plant and hindered support for his past bills. 

“We don’t understand why it has been criminalized under a mountain of lies for the last 90 years,” Clark said. “We do know that alcohol and tobacco companies have funded the opposition to cannabis legislation in other states. We talked about the roots of the opposition from the early 1930s and ’40s.”

Clark said the discussion on his topic among Mensa members, a nonprofit organization open to people who score in the 98th percentile on an IQ test, brought out similar concerns he had with legalizing cannabis or medical marijuana. 

“We all agreed we were concerned about teen use and kids getting their hands on edibles (cannabis products marketed like popular candy brands in states where recreational marijuana is legal),” Clark said.

“But it’s time to drop the fear surrounding this plant. We’ve spent billions of dollars over the years fighting it in the War on Drugs and really there is no moral justification.”

Hill to climb

The hill cannabis legislation has had to climb in Kentucky, Clark said, includes the continued opposition from critics who have said there are no medical studies proving the medical benefits of cannabis. 

“The cover story on National Geographic this month shows there are several government studies on marijuana,” Clark said. “The big change (for Kentucky and other states) will come in 2016 when the U.N. votes on its drug policies. The worst thing that can happen to someone who uses marijuana is they get arrested and it ruins their life. Where has all the War on Drugs money gone?”

Clark has long been an advocate for medicinal marijuana and has updated bills for the last four years mirroring states where medicinal and medical marijuana have become law. 

During the 2015 legislative session, Clark almost daily brought up topics relating to the benefits of medical marijuana to fellow senators including a study showing a reduction in opiate addiction where medical marijuana had been legalized. 

40 provisions

Clark’s Senate Bill 40 contained provisions for the cultivation and dispensing of cannabis to patients in the commonwealth. 

Currently, in Colorado where medicinal and recreational marijuana have been legalized the state government has brought in $96 million in tax revenue. 

According to information from Gov. John Hickenlooper’s office, the state has three taxes on recreational marijuana and one on medical marijuana. 

Medical marijuana has a 2.9 percent sales tax. Recreational marijuana has a 15 percent excise tax when it is transported from a cultivation site to a processing site or retail location. An additional 10 percent special sales tax on recreational marijuana is added to an existing 2.9 percent sales tax. 

A spokesperson from the governor’s office said the state uses the 15 percent excise tax to pay for the construction of public schools and since those taxations have been put in place has collected $40 million.

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