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Legislation to establish medical marijuana program in LA

Lafayette readers are probably all aware of the changes that could be coming in Louisiana with respect to marijuana. Governor Jindal currently has on his desk a bill that would establish a medical marijuana program in Louisiana. Although it is true medical marijuana has actually been legal for some time here, the current legislation would establish an actual framework for regulating the medical marijuana industry, including growing, prescribing and dispensing the drug.

If the legislation is signed—and Jindal has indicated that he fully intends to approve it— Louisiana would become the 24th state to officially approve the use of marijuana for medical purposes. Given the widespread changes taking place in the area of marijuana legislation across the United States, the move wouldn’t be surprising.

Although the trend toward normalization of marijuana is well underway, one of the concerns that some have raised about medical marijuana, as well as approval of marijuana for recreational use, is that the drug is still illegal at the federal level. While this may be true, the Justice Department has a fairly well established policy by now that those who abide by the laws of their state will generally avoid prosecution. Still, there is a legal tension in this area that will ultimately have to be addressed.

In addition to the federal law issue, there is also the problem of how to deal with drugged driving for those who are legally using the drug. Although some states have established legal limits for THC—the active ingredient in marijuana—getting an accurate measurement of intoxication is not an easy matter for marijuana users. We’ll continue looking at this issue in our next post.

Sources:, “Bobby Jindal talks medical marijuana, sentencing reform with The Des Moines Register,” Julia O’Donoghue, June 16, 2015., “Louisiana’s medical marijuana bill awaits Bobby Jindal’s signature,” Emily Lane, June 8, 2015.

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Meet Attorney Guillory

Attorney Joshua S. Guillory was born in Alexandria, Louisiana. Upon graduating high school from Alexandria Senior High, he enrolled in classes at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette where he earned his Bachelor of Science degree. Josh was a member of Mu Kappa Tau, a national honor society for marketing majors, while attending... Read More

Joshua S. Guillory

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