PIERRE, S.D. (KELO) — The South Dakota Department of Health is hosting two ‘town hall-style’ meetings by telephone Monday to gauge the public’s perceptions about the department’s draft rules on medical marijuana.
The sessions are scheduled to start at 5 p.m. CT and 6:30 p.m. CT. People planning to participate should register at state government’s medical marijuana website, medcannabis.sd.gov.
The department rolled out its 105 pages of draft rules Thursday. The final version of the rules must be in place by October 29. The department plans to formally propose the rules later this summer and hold a public hearing sometime in September. You can read the rules attached below.
Nearly 70% of South Dakota voters supported IM 26 legalizing medical marijuana in the November 3 election. The laws take effect July 1 and set deadlines for state officials to finish rule making and start issuing patient and caregiver cards.
Amendment A, legalizing marijuana for people age 21 and older in South Dakota, passed with 54% support. Governor Kristi Noem campaigned against both measures.
After the election, the governor challenged how the constitutional amendment reached the ballot. A circuit judge she had previously appointed declared A invalid because it violated the constitution’s single-subject requirement and should have gone to a constitutional convention before appearing on the ballot. The case is under consideration by the South Dakota Supreme Court. In the meantime, A remains on hold.
Noem and a variety of Republican legislators attempted during the 2021 session to delay medical marijuana from taking effect, originally for one year and then for six months, but the measure died in disagreement between House and Senate members.
As part of the new website, Noem launched a public service announcement about medical marijuana, saying her administration is following the voters’ intent.
State Health Secretary Kim Malsam-Rysdon in a statement to KELOLAND News said, “The Department of Health continues to implement IM 26 within the timeframe set by voters. Monday’s tele-town halls are an opportunity for the public to voice their opinions on the proposed rules implementing the medical cannabis program as outlined in IM 26’s ninety-five sections of law. We welcome the feedback and invite all those interested to register to participate on medcannabis.sd.gov. Recordings of the town halls will be available on the website as well.”