Committee To Set Medical Marijuana Guidelines

May 17, 2004


SANTA CRUZ, Calif. -- Santa Cruz County supervisors are calling for doctors to help set up guidelines for people who use medical marijuana.

State law limits the number of plants medical marijuana users can have to either 12 immature or six mature plants, or 8 ounces. But when the measure was passed, it allowed local jurisdictions to establish their own guidelines.

Santa Cruz County has former county health administrator Dr. George Wolfe setting up a committee of four to five doctors to set up guidelines on what is a reasonable amount of marijuana for a person to have for medical purposes.

Several locations have already adopted guidelines based on the state law, which began in January. The reason Santa Cruz County wants the regulations is so police have a set of guidelines to follow, and sick people who use marijuana don't have to worry about getting arrested for violating any laws.

'The board wants a group of local physicians to look at this from a medical stand point, with what's a reasonable amount in the state,' Wolfe said.

Currently, the general rule of thumb is that patients must demonstrate they are growing only enough marijuana to treat their symptoms during a specific period of time.

Wolfe plans to have recommendations on Aug. 17.

The new regulations won't necessarily wash with the federal government. Federal law outlaws all marijuana use.

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