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Saturday, March 28, 2015
Amendments Made to Sex Education and Marijuana Dispensary Bills
By Hawaii Family Advocates @ 3:51 AM :: 4870 Views :: Education K-12, Family, Drugs

LEGISLATIVE WEEK IN REVIEW -- March 20 - 26, 2015

by Duke Aiona, Hawaii Family Advocates, March 27, 2015

Below are bills that were heard between Friday, March 20, 2015 and Thursday, March 26, 2015.  RED denotes a vote Hawaii Family Advocates is disappointed in.  BLUE denotes a vote we are grateful for.  Download our current scorecard here.


HB 459 HD2 SD1 Relating to Health: Specifies additional elements in Hawaii's existing sexuality health education law, including additional criteria regarding implementation of sexuality health education instruction. Requires the Department of Education to provide certain types of information to the public and parents. Effective 7/1/2050. (SD1) (A defective date ensures that the bill will go to a conference committee meeting).

The bill was heard by a joint Health & Education Senate Committees meeting on March 20, 2015 and it passed with amendments. 

The votes in EDU were as follows:

  • 4 Aye(s): Senator(s) Kidani, Chun Oakland, Dela Cruz, L. Thielen; 
  • 3 No(es): Senator(s) Harimoto, Nishihara, Slom; and
  • 2 Excused: Senator(s) Keith-Agaran, Kouchi.

The votes in HTH were as follows:

  • 4 Aye(s): Senator(s) Green, Wakai, Baker, Ruderman;
  • 2 No(es): Senator(s) Gabbard, Riviere;
  • 1 Excused: Senator(s) Slom.

These are the changes they made to the bill:

     (1)  Adding language that allows parents or guardians of students in kindergarten through fifth grade to opt-in to permit their child to participate in sexuality health education programs, and allows parents or guardians of students in grades six through twelve to opt-out to deny permission for their child to participate in sexuality health education programs; and

      (2)  Deleting the requirement that the Department of Education report to the Legislature annually regarding participation rates and outcomes of the Department of Education's policy to allow parents to opt-in to participate in sexuality health education programs.

STATUS:  It will now move to the Senate Judiciary & Ways & Means for a scheduling of a hearing. 



HB 321 HD1 SD1 Relating to Medical Marijuana:  Establishes a system of medical marijuana dispensaries and limits on amounts that can be purchased. Prohibits counties from enacting zoning regulations that prohibit the use of land for licensed dispensaries. Clarifies the right of qualifying patients and primary caregivers to transport medical marijuana. Establishes various criminal offenses to protect against unauthorized access to dispensary premises, distribution of marijuana to minors, diversion of marijuana, and alteration or falsification of dispensary records. Authorizes any licensed physician, rather than only the primary care physician, of a qualifying patient to issue a written certification. Appropriates funds. Repeals on an unspecified date. (SD1)

The bill was heard by a joint Senate Committee of Health & Public Safety and Management on March 25, 2015.  It passed with amendments.

The votes in HTH were as follows:

  • 6 Aye(s): Senator(s) Green, Wakai, Baker, Gabbard, Riviere, Ruderman
  • 2 Excused:  Senator(s) Keith-Agaran, Slom

The votes in PSM were as follows:

  • 3 Aye(s): Senator(s) Espero, Baker, Galuteria; 
  • 2 Excused: Senator(s) Keith-Agaran, Slom.

These are the changes they made to the bill:

     (1)  Amending the definition of "medical marijuana dispensary" or "dispensary" to mean an entity that holds a dispensary license and operates one or more cultivation sites, manufacture sites, and retail dispensing locations;

     (2)  Deleting the definition of "medical marijuana production center" or "production center";

     (3)  Amending language related to medical marijuana dispensaries licensure procedures and fees to, among other things:

          (A)  Prohibit a person from acting as a dispensary unless the person is a resident of the State;

          (B)  Require the Director of Health to grant medical marijuana dispensary licenses to allow dispensaries to acquire, possess, cultivate, manufacture, deliver, transfer, transport, supply, or dispense marijuana, or related supplies and educational materials, to registered qualifying patients;

          (C)  Specify that each license allows acquisition, possession, cultivation, manufacture, transfer, transport, delivery, supply, and dispensing of medical marijuana only in a county for which it is granted;

          (D)  Establish an unspecified limit on the number of dispensary licenses allowed in each county except Kalawao;

          (E)  Establish an unspecified limit on the number of cultivation sites and dispensing locations allowed under each license;

          (F)  Specify certain eligibility requirements for dispensary licensees;

          (G)  Require the Director of Health to approve an application for a dispensary license if the application meets all dispensary licensing requirements and criteria within an unspecified number of days after receiving the application;

          (H)  Specify the dispensary license application process;

          (I)  Establish an unspecified expiration date for all dispensary licenses;

          (J)  Require that a minimum, unspecified percentage of the interests in a dispensary shall be held at all times by full-time Hawaii residents or entities wholly controlled by Hawaii residents who have documented Hawaii residency for an unspecified number of years;

          (K)  Establish requirements for individuals or entities who hold an unspecified minimum percentage interest in a dispensary;

          (L)  Require dispensaries to operate and maintain a real-time software system of accounting for the total amount of medical marijuana, including the equivalent physical weight of marijuana used to manufacture manufactured marijuana products, that a qualifying patient and primary caregiver purchase from all dispensing locations in the State; and

          (M)  Prohibit sampling or consumption of marijuana product on or within an unspecified distance of the dispensary premises;

     (4)  Inserting language that establishes a total limit on the amount of medical marijuana a qualifying patient may purchase per month and per any two week period;

     (5)  Inserting language that allows qualifying patients from other states to purchase medical marijuana from dispensaries in the State;

     (6)  Deleting language related to medical marijuana production centers and licensure procedures;

     (7)  Inserting language that prohibits dispensaries from commercial advertising and selling any products other than medical marijuana and manufactured medical marijuana products;

     (8)  Inserting language that prohibits a product sold in a dispensary from containing more than an unspecified total amount of tetrahydrocannabinol;

     (9)  Clarifying that the Department of Health shall adopt interim rules that shall be exempt from chapter 91 and be effective upon the effective date of this measure and up to the date of the Department's adoption of final rules in accordance with chapter 91, Hawaii Revised Statutes;

    (10)  Deleting provisions related to medical marijuana dispensary rules, including but not limited to provisions related to:

          (A)  The number of medical marijuana dispensaries permitted in the State;

          (B)  A fee structure for applications and license renewals to operate a dispensary;

          (C)  Security requirements for the transportation of medical marijuana;

          (D)  Rules adopted by the Department of Health exempting persons convicted of a felony that was specifically related to marijuana;

          (E)  The enforcement of prohibitions against the sale or provision of medical marijuana or manufactured marijuana products in quantities that exceed certain limits; and

          (F)  The establishment of a range of penalties for violations of medical marijuana dispensary rules;

    (11)  Inserting provisions related to medical marijuana dispensary rules related to the destruction or disposal of marijuana products;

    (12)  Inserting language that prohibits fraud and other prohibited acts;

    (13)  Amending the grade of offense for the penalty related to visits to more than one dispensary to obtain medical marijuana or manufactured marijuana products from a petty misdemeanor to a misdemeanor;

    (14)  Requiring all marijuana and manufactured marijuana products to be forfeited to the State upon a revocation order becoming final;

    (15)  Amending the definition of "school" as used in the prohibition on dispensaries within a radius of a school to include universities;

    (16)  Inserting language that prohibits everyone except certain individuals from the dispensary premises;

    (17)  Inserting language that prohibits the distribution of medical marijuana to minors who are not registered qualifying patients;

    (18)  Inserting language that prohibits diversion from a dispensary;

    (19)  Inserting language that prohibits the alteration or falsification of medical marijuana dispensary records;

    (20)  Inserting language that allows law enforcement access to dispensary records under certain conditions;

    (21)  Inserting language that prohibits the use of flammable solvents by a qualifying patient or primary caregiver to extract tetrahydrocannabinol from marijuana plants;

    (22)  Inserting language that allows any licensed physician, rather than only the qualifying patient's primary care physician, to issue a written certification for the use of medical marijuana;

    (23)  Inserting an unspecified repeal date; and

    (24)  Making technical, non-substantive amendments for the purposes of clarity and consistency.

STATUS:  The bill will now move to a joint Senate Committee of Judiciary and Senate Ways & Means for scheduling of a hearing.


Mahalo for all that you do to participate in the legislative process.



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