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Hawaii Marijuana Laws
Hawaii, a tropical paradise known for its stunning beaches and lush greenery, has a complex history when it comes to marijuana laws. In recent years, the state has been at the forefront of the nationwide trend toward legalizing cannabis, with medical marijuana becoming legal in 2000 and adult-use marijuana being legalized in 2020. However, despite these changes, strict regulations and restrictions exist regarding the use, possession, and sale of marijuana in Hawaii.
Understanding the laws surrounding marijuana in Hawaii can be daunting, and it is essential to be aware of the legal implications of using or possessing marijuana in the state. This article will provide an overview of the current Hawaii marijuana laws, including the history of cannabis legalization in the state, the regulations surrounding medical and adult-use marijuana, and the penalties for violating these laws.
Act 228, signed into law by Governor Ben Cayetano in 2000, enabled medical marijuana cardholders in Hawaii to cultivate their own cannabis or designate a caretaker to do so on their behalf. With the signing of this law, Hawaii became the first state to legalize medical cannabis through a legislative act and the eighth state overall to do so. However, the law did not establish any provisions for a legal market or dispensaries.
Is Marijuana Legal in Hawaii?
The Hawaii Senate passed a bill called SB 669, which would legalize recreational marijuana and make Hawaii the 22nd state in the United States to do so. The Senate voted 22-3 in favor of the measure, and the state House of Representatives will now be reviewed it.
According to DeVaughn Ward, senior legislative counsel at Marijuana Policy Project, advocates have been working to pass legislation to legalize cannabis in Hawaii sensibly. Now Hawaii is one step closer to becoming the next state to end cannabis prohibition.
The state has decriminalized possession of 3 grams of cannabis, making it punishable by a fine of $130.
Where Can I Use or Possess Marijuana in Hawaii?
In Hawaii, medical marijuana patients are only allowed to use and possess marijuana in private locations, such as their own homes or a friend’s residence, to consume it. The use of marijuana is not allowed in public places, including parks, beaches, sidewalks, and other public areas.
Additionally, it is illegal to operate a vehicle or any heavy machinery while under the influence of marijuana, regardless of whether the person is a medical marijuana patient or not.
Possession of up to three grams of marijuana is a petty misdemeanor punishable by a fine of up to $130, while possession of more than three grams is a misdemeanor that can result in up to 30 days in jail and a fine of up to $1,000.
How Much Cannabis Can I grow?
In Hawaii, medical marijuana patients or their designated caregivers are allowed to grow a limited amount of marijuana for personal use, provided that they have a valid Medical Marijuana Registry Identification Card issued by the Hawaii Department of Health.
Under Hawaiian law, a qualified patient or caregiver may grow up to ten plants, with no more than four mature and flowering, at any given time for personal use. The plants must be grown in an enclosed, locked space, such as a closet, room, or greenhouse, that is not visible to the public.
It is important to note that the recreational use of marijuana is currently illegal in Hawaii, and growing marijuana for non-medical purposes is considered a criminal offense. Cultivating marijuana without a valid Medical Marijuana Registry Identification Card is also illegal and can result in criminal charges.
What are the Medical Marijuana Laws in Hawaii?
The qualifying medical conditions for obtaining medical marijuana in Hawaii include the following:
- Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS);
- Multiple Sclerosis (MS);
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD);
- Rheumatoid arthritis;
- Crohn’s disease;
- Parkinson’s disease;
- Spinal cord injuries and diseases;
- Chronic pain;
It is important to note that while medical marijuana is legal in Hawaii, federal law still considers marijuana to be a Schedule 1 controlled substance and prohibits its use, possession, and cultivation. This means that medical marijuana patients may face legal risks, such as federal prosecution, even if they are in compliance with state law.
Marijuana Advertising Laws in Hawaii
In Hawaii, the advertising of marijuana and marijuana products is regulated by the state’s Department of Health. Under Hawaii law, it is illegal to advertise marijuana or marijuana products in a manner that is appealing to minors. This includes using cartoons, toys, or other images or slogans that may attract children or adolescents. In addition, marijuana advertising may not be placed in a location where it is visible to the general public, including highways, streets, sidewalks, parks, and other public areas.
Marijuana advertising must also include a disclaimer that states that marijuana products are intended for use by registered medical marijuana patients only and that the use of marijuana may impair a person’s ability to operate machinery or vehicles. Furthermore, advertisements for marijuana products must not make false or misleading claims about the benefits or effects of marijuana, and they must not include any health or medical claims unless supported by scientific evidence.
It is important to note that while the advertising of medical marijuana is legal in Hawaii, the advertising of marijuana for non-medical purposes is currently illegal under state law.
Sale And Delivery
In Hawaii, the sale and delivery of marijuana are legal for licensed medical marijuana dispensaries authorized by the state’s Department of Health to operate in the state. Recreational sales and delivery of marijuana are currently illegal in Hawaii.
Medical marijuana dispensaries are required to follow strict regulations and guidelines in order to operate legally in the state. They must obtain a license from the Hawaii Department of Health and comply with all state and local regulations, including requirements for the security, testing, labeling, and packaging of marijuana products.
In addition, medical marijuana dispensaries are not allowed to sell or deliver marijuana or marijuana products to anyone who does not have a valid Medical Marijuana Registry Identification Card issued by the Hawaii Department of Health. Patients must present their card and a valid government-issued photo ID to purchase marijuana from a licensed dispensary.
It is important to note that while the sale and delivery of medical marijuana are legal in Hawaii, the sale and delivery of marijuana for non-medical purposes are currently illegal and can result in criminal charges.
Driving Under Influence in Hawaii
In Hawaii, it is illegal to operate a vehicle or any heavy machinery while under the influence of marijuana, regardless of whether the person is a medical marijuana patient or not.
Under Hawaii law, a person is considered to be driving under the influence of marijuana if their ability to operate a vehicle is impaired by the use of marijuana. This can be determined by various methods, including field sobriety tests, blood tests, and urine tests.
If a person is convicted of driving under the influence of marijuana, they may face penalties such as fines, license suspension, and even imprisonment. The specific penalties will depend on the circumstances of the offense and the person’s prior criminal record.
It is important for medical marijuana patients to understand that even if they have a valid Medical Marijuana Registry Identification Card, they can still be charged with driving under the influence if they are found to be impaired while driving. Therefore, it is always best to avoid driving after using marijuana and to find alternative modes of transportation.
In conclusion, Hawaii has established a comprehensive set of laws and regulations governing the use, possession, cultivation, sale, and advertising of marijuana. While the use of marijuana for medical purposes is legal in the state, the use of marijuana for non-medical purposes is still illegal.
Medical marijuana patients are required to obtain a Medical Marijuana Registry Identification Card and follow strict guidelines regarding possession and cultivation limits, as well as the use and storage of marijuana.
Licensed medical marijuana dispensaries are allowed to operate in Hawaii, but only for selling and delivering medical marijuana to registered patients. The advertising of marijuana and marijuana products is also regulated by the state, with strict guidelines regarding the placement, content, and targeting of advertisements.
It is important for individuals to understand the laws and regulations regarding marijuana in Hawaii and to comply with them to avoid legal consequences. While medical marijuana has been shown to have potential health benefits, it is vital to use it responsibly and in accordance with state laws to ensure the safety and well-being of all individuals.
Once again, we want to remind you that the presented guidelines on Hawaii marijuana laws can not be interpreted as legal advice rather than information.