Amid the vibrant public discussion of the full legalization of marijuana in New Jersey, it’s important to note that significant changes are also coming to the way medical marijuana is distributed in the state. As previously documented in this blog, Governor Phil Murphy has already enacted important reforms expanding patient access to medical marijuana under New Jersey’s Compassionate Use Medical Marijuana Act (“the Act”). On the legislative side, a bill that, among other things, removes limits on the amount of medical marijuana that may be dispensed at one time is advancing in the Assembly.
Jake Honig’s Law, as Assembly Bill 3421 and its counterpart Senate Bill 1955 are known, is so named to honor a seven-year old boy who tragically lost his battle with cancer. The bill removes from the Act the cap on the amount of medical marijuana that a patient may be dispensed in a thirty-day period. It also allows alternative treatment centers to distribute medical marijuana in oil form, and it revokes the prohibition against making edible forms of medical marijuana available only to qualifying patients who are minors.
The statement accompanying the bill explains its purpose as follows:
“In honor of Jake, who passed away on January 21, 2018, this bill seeks to remove certain restrictions on access to medical marijuana in order to reduce the suffering experienced by, and improve the quality of life of, New Jersey patients, like Jake, seeking treatment for a debilitating medical condition.”