Thursday, March 10, 2011

Hawaii state Senate sends five cannabis bills to the House

On Tuesday, March 8 the Hawai'i state Senate overwhelmingly passed five cannabis bills and sent them to the state House.

SB 1460 - decriminalization of one ounce: 24-0-1 (Shimabukuro was excused)

SB 58 - increases plants, dried ounces, patient-caregiver ratio, clarifies transportation language: 24-0-1 (Shimabukuro was excused)

SB 175 - moves program from Public Safety to Health: 24-1 (Kouchi voted "no")

SB 1458 - licenses compassion centers, producers and infused products makers: 24-1 (Slom voted "no")

SB 113 - creates a 3-year research program: 23-2 (Slom and Kouchi voted "no")

Testimony was also overwhelmingly in support, and included letters from LEAP's Neill Franklin and Jay Fleming.

The challenge will be getting hearings scheduled for these bills in the more conservative state House of Representatives. Last year the Senate passed three bills, but all eventually stalled. One reason was the police chiefs of the four counties lobbied the head of the Judiciary committee successfully and no public hearings were held.

This year, the conservative road block is expected to be Public Safety and Military Affairs chair Aquino. There are hopes that at least some of the bills will get hearings.

It should be noted that several weeks ago Maui Police officers were photographed in front of Walmart handing out a fliers opposed to the current legislation...while in uniform (and on the tax payer's dime)!

Pretty incredible. They are clearly in a bit of a panic, and are pulling out all the stops. The ACLU sent a letter to the Maui Police and Corporation Counsel, and we assume they are no longer using that tactic.

It comes down to getting hearings scheduled. And, once scheduled, we will need people to submit testimony.

More to follow.


  1. Just wondering if you have a link to the photos of the officers handing out fliers at Wal-Mart??

  2. Great post by the way! It's great to have someone in Hawaii posting updates, especially someone who is so knowledgeable about the situation in terms of legislation, activism, etc.

  3. Awesome news! I hope you have better luck this year. Hopefully some new seats will equal changed votes...

  4. The police should have to issue a public apology.

  5. That whole moving to Public Health is a winner! Hawaii may be the first state with the simplest answer to it all. No longer a criminal matter.

  6. This page has a link to a Maui paper with a photo. Think he'll be passing out fliers condemning steroids? Who knows?


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