Lawmakers vote on commission to set legal limit for THC levels while driving

(WLNS) – Michigan lawmakers in the House voted 107 to 1 to create a commission that would set similar penalties for drivers under the influence of marijuana, that there are for alcohol.

Michigan’s current laws surrounding marijuana evoke different reactions from each side of the spectrum, on the law enforcement side they say it needs some work.

“The current marijuana law is so obtuse that its very difficult to enforce,” Ingham County Sheriff Gene Wriggelsworth said.

But marijuana users and sellers say otherwise.

“I think it’s pretty fair and I think its well,” Owner of Jay Deez’s Herbs John Disano said.

Currently, law enforcement say the only way to test someone for THC levels is through a blood test, and that system is not the most efficient.

“It’s cumbersome, it takes police away from their regular duties, so its problematic,” Wriggelsworth said.

Criminal Defense Lawyer Matt Newburg of Grand Ledge has worked on several marijuana related cases, and he says the commission has a long way to go before they will be able to come to a concrete resolution.

“It’s going to be an uphill battle for them, it’s going to be a significant challenge, they’re going to have to rely on top notch scientists,” Newburg said.

Unlike other drugs, THC found in marijuana can still be in the bloodstream, even after it no longer affects someone’s ability to drive and because of that, it will make creating a certain level for THC a difficult task.

“If you’re going to place a number on something you’ve got to make sure it’s absolutely reliable,” Newburg said.

Marijuana user and grower Disano says driving as someone who uses marijuana, is all about knowing your limits.

“You gotta respect the medicine, you’ve got to control yourself, not let that control you,” Disano said.

The commission will work to research and recommend a legal level for THC while driving in the state. The bill now goes to the Senate for their review of the issue.

 

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