Prop 2 vs. medical marijuana compromise: What's different?

Details emerged on distinctions between Prop 2, on the ballot in November, and the proposed medical marijuana compromise, which legislative leaders, the governor and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints support. (Photo: KUTV)

(KUTV) — Words matter as Utah gets closer to legalizing medical marijuana.

At the State Capitol on Wednesday, it was noted doctors will not “prescribe“ medical cannabis, they will “recommend” it, to stay on the right side of federal law.

Details also emerged on distinctions between Prop 2, on the ballot in November, and the proposed medical marijuana compromise, which legislative leaders, the governor and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints support.

Connor Boyack of the Libertas Institute once was a key supporter of Prop 2, but is also one of a few people who negotiated compromise language.

He said these are among the differences:

  • Prop 2 allows medical marijuana for “other autoimmune disorders,“ but the compromise does not
  • The compromise provides for medical marijuana in hospice settings, but Prop 2 does not
  • Prop 2 would allow some people to grow marijuana, but the compromise says marijuana flowers can only be given in “blister packs”
  • The compromise says the only edibles with marijuana would be “cubed shaped“ lozenges or gummy bears, while Prop 2 would allow medical marijuana in other food
  • Prop 2 removes patient medical records in 60 days, while the compromise retains the records

Boyack outlined the changes in a legislative hearing attended by the LDS Church’s chief lobbyist, Marty Stephens, a former Utah House Speaker.

“We’re hopeful the compromise ends up being the law,“ he said.

Rebecca Chavez-Houck (D—Salt Lake City) said prior to the meeting, she was not aware how the compromise specifically veered from the ballot initiative.

“We’ve got some general information, but I have not seen a comparison,“ she said.

Chavez-Houck said she supports the passage of Prop 2, which she said would keep pressure on the Legislature to act.

Both proposals are long reading. The compromise is more than 120 pages.

Prop 2 is shorter, at 21 pages.

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