Jan 232013

By Linda Kor
Arizona’s Medical Marijuana Act (AMMA) may be facing even further challenges if a proposed bill filed earlier this month makes it to the November 2014 ballot. Fountain Hills Republican Rep. John Kavanaugh filed a bill for the repeal of the AMMA, believing that voters were misled regarding the impact of legalizing medical marijuana in 2010 and have a right to revisit the issue during the next election.
Since the law was enacted, it has been surrounded in controversy. While it has been shown that the symptoms and side effects of treatments for some illnesses can be eased by the use of marijuana, the potential for abuse of the law by recreational users has raised concerns.
The annual report by the Arizona Department of Health showed that a majority of the prescriptions issued were for chronic pain, something Kavanaugh calls “subjective, ill-defined and easily faked.”
ADHS Director Will Humble admits that there are recreational users amongst those who have medical marijuana cards, but that his department has done everything it can to keep the issue on the medical side of usage.
Other concerns have included the legality of a state law that supersedes federal law, and the potential repercussions for state and county employees who implement the law. The proposed bill is scheduled for review during the current legislative session, which began Jan. 14.