DO OMMA’S NEW EMERGENCY RULES IMPACT PATIENTS?
by Sarah Lee Gossett Parrish
The Oklahoma Medical Marijuana Authority enacted a new set of Emergency Rules that became effective on June 28, 2021. These new Rules implement numerous changes, most of which apply to OMMA-licensed commercial medical marijuana businesses. However, some of the Rules also impact patients, as discussed below.
- The new Rules prohibit caregivers from charging patients for cultivating medical marijuana “in excess of actual costs incurred in cultivating the medical marijuana.” OAC 310:681-2-3.
- The new Rules amend the definition of “marijuana” to exclude Delta 8 and Delta 10 hemp products, which allows individuals to purchase such products without an OMMA-issued medical marijuana patient license. Hemp is grown under the Oklahoma Industrial Hemp Program administered through the Department of Agriculture, Food, and Forestry, not OMMA, and it is legal federally, unlike marijuana—whether medical or adult usage.
Other provisions of the new Rules of interest to patients in particular, while not new to the June 28, 2021, version, include the following:
- A physician can recommend a patient for a short-term medical marijuana license lasting only sixty (60) days, instead of the standard, two-year patient license term.
- Out-of-state patients with unexpired out-of-state medical marijuana patient licenses may apply for a temporary patient license that is valid for a term of thirty (30) days from the date of issuance; provided, the temporary patient license for non-residents “may not extend beyond the expiration date of the underlying out-of-state medical marijuana patient license.” OAC 310:681-2-5(e).
- Patients whose licenses have been terminated on the basis that the recommending physician has determined the patient no longer meets the requirements for the license are entitled to notice and a right to hearing, as mandated not only by the Oklahoma Medical Marijuana and Patient Protection Act, 63 O.S. § 427.1, et seq., but also by the Oklahoma Administrative Procedures Act, 75 O.S. § 250, et seq.
- Patients shall not sell or otherwise transfer any medical marijuana or medical marijuana products to another individual or entity. First offenses may result in a $200.00 fine, and second offenses carry a $500.00 fine and revocation of the patient’s license if it is shown that the violation was willful or grossly negligent. The same applies to licensed caregivers, who may not sell or otherwise transfer any medical marijuana to any individual other than the licensed patient on whose behalf the caregiver is licensed to grow, possess, or purchase the medical marijuana.
- Patients and caregivers may only grow medical marijuana on real property owned by the patient or on real property for which the patient has the property owner’s written permission to grow. Patient grows shall not be accessible to the general public, and shall not be visible from any street adjacent to the property. The Rules define “visible” as “viewable by a normal person with 20/20 eyesight without the use of any device to assist in improving viewing distance or vantage point.” 310:681-2-9 (c).
- Patients and caregivers are prohibited from operating or otherwise using “any extraction equipment or processes utilizing butane, propane, carbon dioxide or any potentially hazardous material in or on residential property.” 310:681-2-9 (f).
- Patients smoking any smokable, vaporized, vapable and e-cigarette medical marijuana and/or products are “subject to the same restrictions for tobacco” as set out in the “Smoking in Public Places and Indoor Workplaces Act”, codified at Title 63 O.S. § 1-1521, et seq.
So…what’s the take-away?
Patients must be mindful of OMMA’s most current Rules, as they apply not only to OMMA commercial business licenses but also to licensed medical marijuana patients.
Information contained herein provides general information related to the law and does not provide legal advice. It is recommended that readers consult their personal lawyer if they want legal advice. No attorney-client or confidential relationship exists or is formed between you and Ms. Parrish as a result of this article.