Arizona Medical-Marijuana Card Discount by State Proposed for Seniors and Veterans

Categories: Medical Weed

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Image: villagehatshop.com
Arizona veterans and people 65 and older would get a big break from the state on the cost of a medical-marijuana card in 2015 under proposed rule changes.

Since 2010's historic vote granting Arizonans the freedom to use medical marijuana legally, the fee for obtaining a registration card has been $150, with a break only for those on food stamps.

New, proposed rules announced Thursday by Will Humble, director of the Arizona Department of Health Services, would give a generous $75 discount to seniors, former military service-people, and recipients of federal Supplemental Security Income and Social Security Disability Insurance benefits.

See also:
-Map: Which Parts of the Phoenix Area Have the Most Medical-Marijuana Patients

About 18 percent of women cardholders and 16 percent men are more than 60, according to stats released last month by the state DHS. (That's a noteworthy difference in use by gender from the overall 70-30 split of men to women in cardholders seen here in Arizona and other states with medical-pot laws. The stats show that older women are registered for the program at a slightly higher rate than men their age. The statistical effect increases with age so that by the 81-and-over category, the actual number of women cardholders, 118, finally surpasses that of men, 97.).

Other changes the DHS is contemplating include:

* Helping the agency track patients who didn't see a doctor in the year before they received their registration card. Humble's not sure what the DHS will do with the information yet, but he's long insisted on trying to keep the program a medical one, as voters intended.

* Codifying the "25-mile rule" to mean by roads, not "as the crow flies." State law prohibits cardholders from growing their own marijuana if an operating dispensary exists within 25 miles. Apparently, some caregivers or cardholders are interested in throwing seeds down in the margins.

* Limiting donations of marijuana to dispensaries by caregivers and cardholders with cultivation privileges to 2.5 ounces every two weeks. This might cut down on any potentially unlawful side-deals going on between amateur growers and dispensaries.

* Clarifying that for deliveries of medical marijuana, the endpoint of the delivery cannot be at a public place, and it must be specified by the patient or caregiver receiving the delivery. Dispensaries are allowed to operate in only one state-authorized location. With this rule, a dispensary representative wouldn't be able to "deliver" marijuana to a spot in some other dispensary's territory and have patients come to him.

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Will Humble
Humble and his team at the DHS began a review of the rules they rolled out in 2011 after a Maricopa County Superior Court judge found them too harsh, in places. In particular, Judge Randall Warner said the rules presented an "undue burden" on businesses by denying them a chance to renew their yearly license if they hadn't received a state operating certificate in time. The deadline had been one year after an August 7, 2012 lottery for approved dispensary locations, but many dispensaries were unable to meet all of their challenges by then, such as obtaining municipal zoning approvals.

The DHS took the opportunity to change not just that rule, but to review all of the rules. The proposed changes appear to streamline the program, not hamper it. But Humble's looking for your opinion through an online survey.

Following a formal rule-making process, the new rules could be in place by early 2015.

Click here for Humble's blog post on the potential changes, which includes a summary of some of the changes, and links to a PDF of the draft of proposed rules and the survey.

Got a tip? Send it to: Ray Stern.

Follow Ray Stern on Twitter: @RayStern



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55 comments
davewk2002
davewk2002

Are any of you aware of US 2013/0059018 A1 This invention relates to the use of phytocannabinoids, either in an isolated form or in the form of a botanical drug substance (BDS) in the treatment of cancer. The cancer to be treated is cancer of the prostate, cancer of the breast or cancer of the colon. We don't allow researchers here to study any benefits of cannabis but we allow foreign pharmaceutical companies to apply for a patent to use it as a treatment for cancer. Also look up US 6630507 B1 that shows that our own government owns the patent on the antioxidant and neuroprotective properties of the plant that can benefit treatment of strokes and alzheimer's disease. At the same time we have people like Michelle Leonhart (head of the DEA) and Michael Boticelli (assistand director of White House Drug Policy) insisting that marijuana is as dangerous as heroin and meth and that it has no medical uses. Any of our kids that believe them but are aware that most people do not have problems with it risk physical addiction and death.  They don't understand why people, particularly our adolescents do not believe them anymore.  Dr Sanjay Gupta was right when he said that our own government has been involved in a 70 year campaign to misinform the American people about the medical benefits of cannabis. This blatant dishonesty and  greed regarding the use of cannabis as medicine must stop even if the only alternative is to legalize cannabis and to regulate it like alcohol.  

TommyCollins
TommyCollins topcommenter

Right. And we need crip tags in every damn parking lot so we don't have to waddle as far to the store where we will demand our goddam senior and/or military vet discount.


How about us senior folks just be damn glad we made it this far and quit worrying about all the discounts we feel we have earned by virtue of our latest birthday?



FreeTheWeed
FreeTheWeed

Why should war criminals, rapists and baby killers get special privileges??

Sindi Stack
Sindi Stack

Yes considering what our vets did for us. Yes for Sr Citizens since many are just living on SSA.

Wa Aayne
Wa Aayne

NO then they would be targets

Craig Murphy
Craig Murphy

There should be no card.... It is a plant that has existed as long as people have. It should be free. Stop jailing people for this already. Personally I don't partake, but I don't see the benefit to society for spending billions in the 'war" in drugs over weed. Go bust Meth. I personally don't care to see people incarcerated for pot.

Lance Wilson
Lance Wilson

They should get a free card and free weed for life if they want it!

Ten Bears
Ten Bears

AGAIN, WE FIND THE STICKY HANDS OF GOVERNMENT REACHING IN TO THE TILL! THEY PROVE OVER AND OVER LIES ARE THE STANDARD! HOW SO U ASK? REMEMBER THE PAPER REDUCTION THE CONSOLIDATIONS OF SERVICES THE REMOVAL OF SERVICES TO SAVE MONEY SO WHY ARE THEY RAISING TAXES WHICH IS 47% TO EACH PERSON PER YEAR! Medical marijuana and the fucked up governments we are tired of shall not marry well!

Ten Bears
Ten Bears

marijuana should not be controlled in any form it should be legal for anyone to grow it as any plant food

Matt Mayo
Matt Mayo

Should be free for everyone. Why should you have to pay for a clearance card?

Wilder Dayze
Wilder Dayze

A reaction to hydro codone Acetaminophen sent me to the ER, but I can't afford the $300 for my pot card. I qualify for cancer and chronic pain, but it would also possibly help insomnia, anxiety...Can't afford it. And that is BEFOre I even try to buy the pot itself. Once a year. It was legalized for who it is really meant for rich white people.

Benne Rex
Benne Rex

and people named Bennie - that have no medical condition!

Benton Tedder
Benton Tedder

YES!!! They got injured while fighting for our country, they should get their pain medicine for free!! That stuff is expensive, I had a card in CA, wowsers, you need a second job just to fill your script. Hell, they should get free housing and a nice pension!

Dan Thompson
Dan Thompson

No....... They should pay the same price!

Rita Mary
Rita Mary

Vets yes. Seniors-- depending on their income level. I know many seniors barely making it on fixed incomes trying to just pay for their prescription drugs and others are so rich they golf every day and take a couple of cruises a year and eat out every night. Might be hard to regulate but no, old age not a pass for paying fair share.

Robin Scott Andress
Robin Scott Andress

I think veterans should get the pension and retirement plan of our do nothing legislators.

WhoKnows
WhoKnows topcommenter

While I'm an AARP member, the "senior discount" for me wouldn't kick in for some time.  By them, I hope it's just flat out legal in AZ!

valleynative
valleynative topcommenter

"senior" in this case means 65 and older, for those of us old enough to care about such things.


Troy Farah Faucet
Troy Farah Faucet

Exactly. Compared to a lot of other states, AZ has it pretty expensive for this medical expense. A lot of people that choose to use cannabis as an alternative to mainstream medicine include price as a factor (duh, cannabis is cheaper than expensive, addictive pills).

Cheryl Perez
Cheryl Perez

of course the vets put their lives on th line for us.

Felicia Salazar
Felicia Salazar

They should pretty much get a discount on everything IMO

medangditba
medangditba

Think of the children. What kind of message will we send by legalizing a plant? <EXTREME SARCASM>

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