The 2015 Legislative Session

HB321(HD1,SD2) A Medical Marijuana Dispensary Bill is in motion after passing the 3rd Reading. Changes are expected to happen later, ONCE it reaches the CONFERENCE committee where selected lawmakers from both the House and Senate will work on it. Members have not yet been appointed.
Stay Tuned!
SB1291(SD2)A Civil Protections bill passed through Decision Making on APRIL 7th with amendments.
SB682(SD2,HD1)A Dispensary System bill passed through Decision Making on APRIL 7th UNAMENDED.

2015 legislative session began on January 21st 2015. This is likely to be a very big year for medical marijuana. We have collected a list of the bills, with short summaries and the latest updates.

Click on the BILL number to be taken to the legislature’s website to read the text and register to receive up-to-the-minute information about the bill.

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Dispensary Bills:

  • HB321 HD1 SD1- This Dispensary Bill was produced using HCR 48 Task Force recommendations, the task force created by a resolution last session.

    • Referred to: HLT / JUD, FIN
    • This bill was passed with amendments by HLT and JUD, and passed through FIN without further changes. Many changes were made to the bill. The most significant one limits the types of products that may be carried by dispensaries to “oils, capsules, lozenges, and pills.” It also changes the 500 foot distance to schools to 750 feet to schools, playgrounds and various other types of public areas.
    • Changes on 4/8/15 include an increase in the sales tax and a limit on the number of licenses and dispensaries per county. Committee reports have not yet been released (as of 4/9/15).
    • 4/20/15 HB321: Senate Conferees Appointed: Green Chair; Espero, Keith-Agaran, Tokuda Co-Chairs; Gabbard.
  • SB682 SD2 HD1Dispensaries. The new draft of this bill now creates a dispensary system that is generally modeled on the same task force recommendations that HB321 was. This bill allows for a smaller number of licensees, beginning with six licensees in the first year, allowing six more in year 2, and then allowing the department of health to issue licenses as it deems necessary. The bill also requires caregivers or patients who are growing more than a certain number (not yet specified) of plants in one place to register as a “producer” with the department of health. The bill also removes the ability of caregivers to grow cannabis for patients after the dispensaries begin operating.
  • For TALKING POINTS-please click HERE.
    • HISTORY: Introduced by ESPERO, GALUTERIA
    • Referred to HTH, JDL.
    • This bill was passed out of committee with radical amendments. The civil protections contained in this bill were included in SB1291’s SD2, and new provisions relating to transportation and certifying physicians replaced them.
    • Votes: Ayes, 23; Aye(s) with reservations: Senator(s) Inouye, Kidani, Kouchi . Noes, 2 (Senator(s) Harimoto, Slom).
    • 4/20/15 SB682: Senate Conferees Appointed: Green Chair; Keith-Agaran Co-Chair; Espero, Gabbard, Ihara.

Civil Protections Bill:

  • SB1291 SD2Civil Protections for Medical Cannabis patients This bill grants medical marijuana patients some protections with regard to housing, education, child custody, and organ transplants.
  • FOR TALKING POINTS, please click HERE.
    • HISTORY: Introduced by KEITH-AGARAN, ENGLISH, ESPERO, RUDERMAN, Dela Cruz, Galuteria, Kahele, Shimabukuro
    • Referred to HTH, JDL.
    • This bill passed the THIRD reading and passed out of committee with an SD2, (which made significant changes to the bill). The original employment protections were removed, and protections for housing, education, child custody and organ transplants were added.
    • Votes:  Ayes, 23; Aye(s) with reservations: Senator(s) Inouye, Kouchi . Noes, 2 (Senator(s) Harimoto, Slom.
    • 4/7/15 Amendment includes some employee protections. Committee reports not yet released (as of 4/9/15).
    • 4/20/15 SB1291: House Conferees Appointed: Belatti, Rhoads Co-Chairs; Creagan, Takayama, Thielen.

For clarity, we have not included all bills that affect marijuana issues. We included those that affect the medical cannabis program. If you are interested in issues relating to adult-use marijuana (such as decriminalization), please visit Fresh Approach Hawaii.

To ensure that the above information is current, bills that have missed deadlines for hearings are remove from this list and can be viewed here. While those bills are considered “dead” for the 2015 legislative session, they may still be alive in the 2016 session.