This Article shall be known as the, “North Carolina Medical Cannabis Act.”
Legislative findings and purpose.
The General Assembly makes the following findings:
The final version of the Declaration of Independence declares: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are, “Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” It is every citizen’s right to life, as medical cannabis may not be a medicine that is an instantaneous life saver, it is a treatment that is effective in prolonging the lives of some terminally and chronically ill patients. Medical Cannabis prolongs life and it is the unalienable right of the patient’s in North Carolina who suffer from terminal and chronic illness to have access to a life prolonging medical treatment. The sovereign citizens of North Carolina have the right to medicate their illness as they seem fit to provide the best quality of life. No person or government has the right to deduce the life of a patient that will have a prolonged and higher quality of life by use of medical medical cannabis.
(1)(B) Modern medical research has discovered beneficial uses for cannabis in treating or alleviating pain, nausea, and other symptoms associated with certain debilitating medical conditions, as found by the National Academy of Sciences’ Institute of Medicine in March 1999. Also as of 1999 The American Cancer Society recognizes the benefits of cannabis marijuana as effective treatment to ailments associated with cancers.
(1) (C) With the discovery of the “Endocannabinoid System” in 1992 by Ralph Mechoulam along with NIMH researchers William Duvane and Dr. Lumir Hanus. The Endocannabinoid System lies within the human (mammalian) brain and it present throughout the central and peripheral nervous systems. Studies from the National Health Institute from April 2017 supports that humans with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder are deficient in the particular cannabinoid THC. Several US Studies conclude medical cannabis marijuana is a safe and effective treatment for most terminal and chronic physical and mental illness. Medical cannabis is a medicine when grown in a sterile, regulated environment, properly tagged, labeled, and documented; provided to a patient to alleviate symptoms of terminal and chronic illness’ with the suggestion of a licensed medical care provider, preferably that of a Doctor, Practicing Nurse Practitioner, or Registered Nurse, who are licensed as medical care providers in the State of North Carolina.
(2) According to the United States Sentencing Commission and the Federal Bureau of Investigation, 99 out of every 100 cannabis arrests in the United States are made under state law, rather than under federal law. Consequently, changing State law will have the practical effect of protecting from arrest the vast majority of seriously ill people who have a medical need to use cannabis.
(3) The United States Department of Health and Human Services, through the Compassionate Investigation New Drug (IND) program, provides cannabis by prescription to a number of individuals for their use as medicine. The cannabis is grown at the federal cannabis research garden at the University of Mississippi and is processed and distributed by the Research Triangle Institute in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina. The patients receive the cannabis monthly in
canisters of approximately 300 pre-rolled cigarettes. The dosage for patients in the IND program ranges from seven to nine grams per day. Since the inception of the program in 1978, individual patients in the IND program have received and consumed approximately 6.5 pounds of cannabis per year, thereby establishing a safe and effective dosage for a chronic daily use patient to possess and consume. The IND program was closed to new applicants in 1991.
(4) In 1992, the United States Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) published research in a report entitled “Cannabis Yields” stating that canopy cover, rather than the number of plants, is the most accurate indicator of a garden’s yield. According to the DEA report, 250 square feet of mature garden canopy will for patients who use cannabis daily, and less than the amount prescribed and
delivered to the IND patients by the federal government.
(5) Although federal law currently prohibits any use of cannabis outside of the IND program, the laws of Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, District of Columbia, Delaware, Florida, Hawaii, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Dakota, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Washington permit the medical use and cultivation of cannabis. North Carolina joins in this effort for the health and welfare of its citizens.
(6) States are not required to enforce federal law or prosecute people for engaging
in activities prohibited by federal law. Therefore, compliance with this Article does not put the State of North Carolina in violation of federal law.
(7) Compassion dictates that State law should make a distinction between the medical and nonmedical use of cannabis. Hence, the purpose of this Article is to protect patients with debilitating medical conditions, and their physicians and caregivers, from arrest and prosecution, criminal and other penalties, and property forfeiture by allowing the beneficial use of medical cannabis in a regulated system for alleviating symptoms caused by debilitating medical conditions and their medical treatments.
(8) This Article is intended to make only those changes to existing North Carolina
laws that are necessary to protect patients and their doctors from criminal and civil penalties and is not intended to change current civil and criminal laws governing the use of cannabis for nonmedical purposes.
(9) Based on data gathered from other states where medical cannabis has been
regulated, this Article will result in approximately two hundred fifty million
dollars ($250,000,000) per year in revenues for the State within four years of
implementation in the Tenth Amendment of the United States Constitution.
(10) The General Assembly enacts this Article pursuant to its police power to enact 30
legislation for the protection of the health of the citizens, as reserved to the State.