JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (KY3/KSPR) - In last November's election, 65% of Missourians voted in favor of Amendment 2, also known as the Veteran Healthcare Services Initiative. Under Amendment 2, medical marijuana was legalized with a sales tax of 4% and the revenues from the medical marijuana are supposed to be used on healthcare services for veterans. Right now, the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS) is in the middle of making that happen by coming up with the rules for the upcoming program.
Lisa Cox, the Chief of Public Information for DHSS, said they are working with everyone they can think of to ensure the program's rules will be all encompassing. This includes doctors and potential patients, law enforcement agencies, and other states who have already been through this process.
DHSS is also looking for the public's help. "We also know that there are probably a lot of untapped resources within our state," said Lisa Cox. "It's easy to target those individual groups and get their feedback, but we want to make sure that we don't miss people who really have a voice and really want to be heard about this program."
To make sure everyone across Missouri gets a chance to weigh in on the creation of the new medical marijuana program's rules, DHSS is hosting a public forum from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. Wednesday, February 13 at the Governor’s Office Building in Jefferson City. DHSS representatives will be present to accept suggestions from the public regarding the creation of rules and regulations for the program. For those who don't live near Jefferson City, Cox says there are suggestion forms on their website. They also encourage people to email MedicalMarijuanaInfo@health.mo.gov with any questions.
DHSS will also begin releasing initial drafts of its rules for public review. In the coming months, interested individuals should monitor the web page for new drafts, which will be posted as soon as they are available.
DHSS must have a finalized set of rules for the state's medical marijuana program by June 4, 2019.