A New Mexico judge last week ordered the state Department of Health and the Regulation and Licensing Department to stop enforcing the old medical cannabis purchase limits and begin operating under the rules included in the state’s adult-use law, or argue why the agencies should continue enforcing the old limits, the Santa Fe New Mexican reports. The ruling comes in response to a petition by a medical cannabis patient that argues the continued enforcement of the old limits is illegal.
Under the old law, medical cannabis patients can purchase up to 8 ounces over a 90-day period, while under the broad legalization law, adults 21-and-older can purchase up to 2 ounces at a time. Adult-use sales in the state are expected to commence in April.
In the writ, State District Judge Benjamin Chavez said that state agencies named in the petition could choose to appear in court and argue why they should not comply with the court’s order.
Jacob Candelaria, the attorney for the patient who is also a state senator, said his client “is certainly encouraged and appreciative” of Chavez’s decision.
“[The decision] recognizes neither the Department of Health or Regulation and Licensing Department can take rights away from medical cannabis patients that they have under state law.”—Candelaria to the New Mexican
A spokeswoman for the Regulation and Licensing Department’s Cannabis Control Division told the New Mexican that “the Cannabis Control Division is reviewing the writ and does not comment on pending litigation.”
“CCD is committed to ensuring that medical cannabis patients can get the medicine they need in accordance with the law,” the spokesperson said.
The Department of Health declined to comment on the pending litigation to the New Mexican.
Author: TG Branfalt