About Medical Marijuana Laws in Montana
Montana’s medical cannabis program covers a list of qualifying conditions that make residents eligible for the program. Under the directive of Gov. Steve Bullock, physician consultations may be conducted via telemedicine during COVID-19 for both new patients and renewals and curbside delivery is allowed.
In the November 2020 election, Montana legalized recreational marijuana use in addition to the state’s medical cannabis program. Two complimentary ballot initiatives, I-90 and CI-118, to legalize recreational cannabis use passed on November 3, 2020 in Montana for adults 21 and over. Both ballot initiatives were required in order to pass recreational cannabis use.
CI-118 allows the Montana Constitution to be amended in order to set 21 as the legal age for purchasing recreational cannabis.
The ballot initiative I-190 establishes rules for recreational cannabis use including taxation of 20% and the option for cities and counties to opt-out of allowing dispensaries in the jurisdiction. In addition, I-190 puts the Department of Revenue in charge of establishing and regulating a system to grow and sell cannabis.
Another exciting feature of this initiative is that it allows people convicted of cannabis crimes in the past to seek resentencing or expungement of the offense on their record.
The Big Sky Country State has big plans for the tax revenue that the recreational cannabis market will produce over the next five years, reported the Independent Record.
“Of the tax revenue that would be generated by the measure, 10.5% would go to the state’s general fund, while the remainder would fund conservation programs, substance abuse treatment, veterans’ services, health care costs, and localities where marijuana is sold,” reports the Montana news source.
Qualifying Medical Conditions and Cost
Montana’s medical cannabis program dates back to 2004 when voters initiated the ballot measure, with 62% approving it. Since then, Montana has come up with a long list of qualifying conditions that include:
Additionally, the state deems that a chronic medical condition or its treatment that causes other symptoms or disorders also makes patients eligible for the medical cannabis program. Those additional conditions and symptoms include:
Lastly, painful peripheral neuropathy, central nervous system disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), or terminal illness also qualify patients for the program. Along with having a condition, any Montana resident applying for a medical cannabis card must prove their residency with a valid driver’s license or state ID. A Montana medical cannabis card’s cost is $20, and it costs $10 to replace or update provider information.