The state of New Hampshire has taken some steps toward creating reasonable cannabis access policies that its constituents have shown support for, but it still has a ways to go.
Recreational Marijuana in New Hampshire
Despite attempts by legislators to implement decriminalization policies, possession of any amount of marijuana remains a misdemeanor, punishable by up to 1 year in prison and $2,000 in fines.
The New Hampshire House of Representatives did pass a decriminalization bill in its 2017 session, and the state’s new governor Chris Sununu (R) has said he intends to sign the it into law. House Bill 640 would make the possession of up to three quarters of an ounce of cannabis or up to five grams of hash a civil offense punishable by a $100 fine, rather than a criminal offense. Any additional offense without a three-year period could be a class B misdemeanor and subject to higher fines. The money collected from fines will go to a fund dedicated to alcohol and drug abuse prevention and treatment.
Medical Marijuana in New Hampshire
New Hampshire took a huge step forward by passing a comprehensive medical marijuana law in 2013. Gov. Maggie Hassan signed House Bill 573 to legalize medical marijuana on July 23, 2013, but the rollout was plagued with delays and the first dispensary didn’t open until April 2016. Under the law, registered patients are allowed to possess up to 2 ounces of usable marijuana.
The state currently has four open and operational dispensaries. The law does not allow for qualified patients to cultivate marijuana at home.
In order for patients to be eligible for New Hampshire’s Therapeutic Cannabis Program, a licensed physician or advanced practice registered nurse must issue a written certification that certifies that a patient has BOTH a condition listed here AND a symptom listed in the second list:
- Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS)
- Alzheimer’s Disease
- Chronic Pancreatitis
- Crohn’s Disease
- Hepatitis C
- Multiple Sclerosis
- Muscular Dystrophy
- Parkinson’s Disease
- Spinal Cord Injury or Disease
- Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)
- Ulcerative Colitis
- Agitation of Alzheimer’s Disease
- Chemotherapy Induced Anorexia
- Elevated Intraocular Pressure
- Moderate to Severe Vomiting
- Severe Pain That Has Not Responded to Previously Prescribed Medication
- Persistent Muscle Spasms
- Wasting Syndrome or Cachexia
CBD from Hemp Oil in New Hampshire
Consumption of CBD hemp oil is federally legal, as CBD hemp oil falls under the same importation and commerce laws as other hemp products. New Hampshire has no further laws in place specifically related to CBD (cannabidiol) from hemp oil, so it is legal for all to purchase and consume.
Cultivation of Cannabis in New Hampshire
Growing cannabis for medical or personal purposes remains illegal. Governor Maggie Hassan signed House Bill 421 in July 2015, authorizing the University of New Hampshire to grow industrial hemp for research purposes.
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