Marijuana-related bills in the 2018 Virginia General Assembly

The following marijuana-related bills have been filed for the 2018 Virginia General Assembly legislative session. This page will be updated regularly. Click the bill title for the complete text and additional information. Questions? Contact Virginia NORML at director@virginianorml.org or 804-464-7050 M-F 9-6.   


Decriminalization

  

SB 111 Marijuana; decriminalization of simple marijuana possession.

Chief patron: Sen Adam Ebbin D-30
House patrons: Del Kaye Kory D-38

Action Alert:  Support Marijuana Decriminalization in Virginia

Marijuana; decriminalization of simple marijuana possession. Decriminalizes simple marijuana possession and provides a civil penalty of no more than $50 for a first violation, $100 for a second violation, and $250 for a third or subsequent violation. Current law imposes a maximum fine of $500 and a maximum 30-day jail sentence for a first offense, and subsequent offenses are a Class 1 misdemeanor. The bill provides that the suspended sentence/substance abuse screening provisions and driver's license suspension provisions apply only to criminal violations or to civil violations by a juvenile. The bill provides that a court may suspend a driver's license for a civil violation committed by an adult. A civil violation will be treated as a conviction for prohibitions on the purchase or transport of a handgun and disqualification for a concealed handgun permit.

Virginia NORML supports the passage of this bill.

 

HB 1063 Marijuana; decriminalization of simple marijuana possession.

Chief patron: Del Steve Heretick D-79
House patrons: Del Mark Cole R-88, Del Elizabeth Guzman D-31, Del Patrick Hope D-47, Del Kaye Kory D-38, Del Paul Krizek D-44, Del Marcus Simon D-53

Marijuana; decriminalization of simple marijuana possession. Decriminalizes marijuana possession and provides a civil penalty of no more than $250 for a first violation and $1,000 for a second or subsequent violation. Under current law, a first offense is punishable by a maximum fine of $500 and a maximum jail sentence of 30 days, and subsequent offenses are a Class 1 misdemeanor. The bill creates a rebuttable presumption that a person who possesses no more than one-half ounce of marijuana possesses it for personal use and provides that the existing suspended sentence and substance abuse screening provisions apply only to criminal violations or to civil violations by a minor. The bill decreases the penalty for distribution or possession with intent to sell more than one-half but not more than five pounds of marijuana from a Class 5 felony to a Class 6 felony.

Virginia NORML supports the passage of this bill.


Driver's License

  

SB 33 Marijuana offenses; driver's license forfeiture.

Chief patron: Sen William Stanley R-20
Senate patrons: Sen Chap Petersen D-34

House patrons: Del Kaye Kory D-38

Marijuana offenses; driver's license forfeiture. Eliminates the requirement that the Virginia Department of Transportation receive written assurance from the Federal Highway Administration of the U.S. Department of Transportation that Virginia will not lose any federal funds as a prerequisite to implementing revisions enacted in 2017 that except persons who have been placed on deferred disposition for simple possession of marijuana, subject to certain exceptions, from the existing provision that a person loses his driver's license for six months when convicted of or placed on deferred disposition for a drug offense. The bill contains an emergency clause.

Virginia NORML supports the passage of this bill.

 

SB 148 Driver's licenses; suspensions for certain non-driving related offenses.

Chief patron: Sen John Edwards D-21

Driver's license suspensions for certain non-driving related offenses. Removes the existing provisions that a person's driver's license is suspended (i) when he is convicted of or placed on deferred disposition for a drug offense or (ii) for nonpayment of fines and court costs for offenses not pertaining to the operator or operation of a motor vehicle. The provisions of this bill that affect the Code of Virginia have a delayed effective date of September 1, 2018.

Virginia NORML supports the passage of this bill.


Expungement

   

HB 1065 Expungement of police and court records; possession of marijuana.

Chief patron: Del Steve Heretick D-79

Expungement of police and court records; possession of marijuana. Allows a person convicted of possession of marijuana, or charged with such offense which charge was deferred and dismissed, who has successfully completed all terms of probation to file a petition for expungement after at least five years have passed since the date of conviction. Any conviction that is expunged will be considered a prior conviction for purposes of prosecution of any subsequent offense for which the prior conviction statutorily enhances punishment.

Virginia NORML supports the passage of this bill.

 

HB 1066 Expungement of police and court records.

Chief patron: Del Steve Heretick D-79

Expungement of police and court records. Provides that a court that enters a nolle prosequi for a criminal charge or dismisses such charge for any reason may, upon motion of the person charged and with the agreement of the attorney for the Commonwealth, enter an order requiring the expungement of the police and court records relating to the charge.

Virginia NORML supports the passage of this bill.

 

SB 403 Expungement of certain charges and convictions.

Chief patron: Sen Ryan McDougle R-4

Expungement of certain charges and convictions. Allows a person to petition for expungement of convictions and deferred disposition dismissals for marijuana possession, underage alcohol possession, and using a false ID to obtain alcohol when the offense occurred prior to the person's twenty-first birthday; all court costs, fines, and restitution have been paid; and five years have elapsed since the date of completion of all terms of sentencing and probation.

Virginia NORML supports the passage of this bill.

 

SB 645 Marijuana possession, etc.

Chief patron: Sen Jeremy McPike D-29

Expungement of certain charges and convictions. Allows a person to petition for expungement of convictions and deferred disposition dismissals for marijuana possession, underage alcohol possession, and using a false ID to obtain alcohol when the offense occurred prior to the person's twenty-first birthday and five years have elapsed since the date of completion of all terms of sentencing and probation.

Virginia NORML supports the passage of this bill.


Medical

  

HB 137 Marijuana possession or distribution for medical purposes.

Chief patron: Del Mark Levine D-45
House patrons: Del Betsy Carr D-69, Del Lee Carter D-50, Del Elizabeth Guzman D-31, Del Patrick Hope D-47, Del Paul Krizek D-44, Del Kenneth Plum D-36, Del Sam Rasoul D-11, Del Marcus Simon D-53

Possession or distribution of marijuana for medical purposes; affirmative defense for treatment of cancer. Provides an affirmative defense to prosecution for possession of marijuana if a person has a valid written certification issued by a practitioner for cannabidiol oil or THC-A oil for treatment of, or to alleviate the symptoms of, cancer. Under current law, only the treatment of intractable epilepsy is covered by the affirmative defense.

Virginia NORML supports the passage of this bill.

 

HB 458 CBD oil and THC-A oil; certification for use; dispensing.

Chief patron: Del Eileen Filler-Corn D-41

CBD oil and THC-A oil; certification for use; dispensing. Provides that a practitioner may issue a written certification for the use of cannabidiol oil or THC-A oil for the treatment or to alleviate the symptoms of any diagnosed condition or disease. Under current law, a practitioner may only issue such certification for the treatment or to alleviate the symptoms of intractable epilepsy. The bill increases the supply of CBD oil or THC-A oil a pharmaceutical processor may dispense from a 30-day supply to a 90-day supply. The bill reduces the minimum amount of cannabidiol or tetrahydrocannabinol acid per milliliter for a dilution of the Cannabis plant to fall under the definition of CBD oil or THC-A oil, respectively. The bill provides that any agent or employee of a pharmaceutical processor is authorized to deliver CBD oil or THC-A oil. Finally, the bill provides that no agent or employee of a pharmaceutical processor can be prosecuted for the possession or manufacture of marijuana or the possession, manufacture, or distribution of CBD oil or THC-A oil if such agent or employee is acting in accordance with certain statutes and regulations. Under current law, such agents and employees may be prosecuted but it is considered an affirmative defense if such agents or employees act in accordance with such statutes and regulations.

Virginia NORML supports the passage of this bill.

 

HB 974 Medical marijuana; written certification.

Chief patron: Del Elizabeth Guzman D-31

Medical marijuana; written certification. Allows a person to possess marijuana or tetrahydrocannabinol pursuant to a valid written certification issued by a physician for the treatment of any medical condition deemed terminal or debilitating by a licensed health care professional, pain management, cancer, glaucoma, intractable epilepsy, human immunodeficiency virus, osteoporosis, or arthritis. The bill allows a physician or pharmacist to distribute such substances without being subject to prosecution. Under current law, a person has an affirmative defense to prosecution for possession of marijuana if the marijuana is in the form of cannabidiol oil or THC-A oil and the person has been issued a written certification by a physician that such marijuana is for the purposes of treating or alleviating the person's symptoms of intractable epilepsy. The bill expands the authority for a pharmaceutical processor, after obtaining a permit from the Board of Pharmacy and under the supervision of a licensed pharmacist, to manufacture and provide marijuana in any form to be used for the treatment of any medical condition deemed terminal or debilitating by a licensed health care professional, pain management, cancer, glaucoma, intractable epilepsy, human immunodeficiency virus, osteoporosis, or arthritis, not just marijuana in the form of cannabidiol oil and THC-A oil to be used for the treatment of intractable epilepsy. Finally, the bill clarifies that the penalties for forging or altering a written certification for medical marijuana or for making or uttering a false or forged written certification are the same as the penalties for committing the same acts with regard to prescriptions.

Virginia NORML supports the passage of this bill.

 

HB 1014 CBD oil and THC-A oil; certification for use; dispensing.

Chief patron: Del David Toscano D-79

CBD oil and THC-A oil; certification for use; dispensing. Provides that a practitioner may issue a written certification for the use of cannabidiol oil or THC-A oil for the treatment or to alleviate the symptoms of any diagnosed condition or disease determined by the practitioner to benefit from such use. Under current law, a practitioner may only issue such certification for the treatment or to alleviate the symptoms of intractable epilepsy.

Virginia NORML supports the passage of this bill.

 

HB 1064 Medical marijuana; written certification.

Chief patron: Del Steve Heretick D-79

Medical marijuana; written certification. Allows a person to possess marijuana or tetrahydrocannabinol pursuant to a valid written certification issued by a physician for the treatment of any medical condition and allows a physician or pharmacist to distribute such substances without being subject to prosecution. Under current law, a person has an affirmative defense to prosecution for possession of marijuana if the marijuana is in the form of cannabidiol oil or THC-A oil and the person has been issued a written certification by a physician that such marijuana is for the purposes of treating or alleviating the person's symptoms of intractable epilepsy. The bill expands the authority for a pharmaceutical processor, after obtaining a permit from the Board of Pharmacy and under the supervision of a licensed pharmacist, to manufacture and provide marijuana in any form to be used for the treatment of any medical condition, not just marijuana in the form of cannabidiol oil and THC-A oil to be used for the treatment of intractable epilepsy. Finally, the bill clarifies that the penalties for forging or altering a written certification for medical marijuana or for making or uttering a false or forged written certification are the same as the penalties for committing the same acts with regard to prescriptions.

Virginia NORML supports the passage of this bill.

 

HB 1251 CBD oil and THC-A oil; certification for use; dispensing.

Chief patron: Del Benjamin Cline R-24
Chief co-patron: Del Glenn Davis R-84

CBD oil and THC-A oil; certification for use; dispensing. Provides that a practitioner may issue a written certification for the use of cannabidiol oil or THC-A oil for the treatment or to alleviate the symptoms of any diagnosed condition or disease determined by the practitioner to benefit from such use. Under current law, a practitioner may only issue such certification for the treatment or to alleviate the symptoms of intractable epilepsy. This bill is a recommendation of the Joint Commission on Health Care.

Virginia NORML supports the passage of this bill.

 

HB 1422 CBD oil and THC-A oil; certification for use; dispensing.

Chief patron: Del Daniel Marshall R-14

CBD oil and THC-A oil; certification for use; dispensing. Provides that a practitioner may issue a written certification for the use of cannabidiol oil or THC-A oil for the treatment or to alleviate the symptoms of any diagnosed condition or disease, including epilepsy, cancer, glaucoma, human immunodeficiency virus, acquired immunodeficiency syndrome, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, multiple sclerosis, post-traumatic stress disorder, traumatic brain injury, chronic pain, or other chronic or terminal condition or disease. Under current law, a practitioner may issue such certification only for the treatment or to alleviate the symptoms of intractable epilepsy.

Virginia NORML supports the passage of this bill.

 

SB 330 THC-A oil; dispensing.

Chief patron: Sen Siobhan Dunnavant R-12

THC-A oil; dispensing. Requires the Board of Pharmacy to promulgate regulations that (i) ensure the percentage of tetrahydrocannabinol in dispensed THC-A oil is within 10 percent of the level of tetrahydrocannabinol measured for labeling and (ii) require stability testing of any pharmaceutical processor producing THC-A oil.

Virginia NORML supports the passage of this bill.

 

SB 597 Possession or distribution of marijuana for medical purposes; affirmative defense for treatment.

Chief patron: Sen Jill Vogel R-27

Possession or distribution of marijuana for medical purposes; affirmative defense for treatment of certain conditions. Provides an affirmative defense to prosecution for possession of marijuana if a person has a valid written certification issued by a practitioner for cannabidiol oil or THC-A oil for treatment of, or to alleviate the symptoms of, cancer, glaucoma, human immunodeficiency virus, acquired immune deficiency syndrome, hepatitis C, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, Crohn's disease, Alzheimer's disease, nail patella, cachexia or wasting syndrome, multiple sclerosis, or complex regional pain syndrome. Under current law, only the treatment of intractable epilepsy is covered by the affirmative defense.

Virginia NORML supports the passage of this bill.

 

SB 726 CBD oil and THC-A oil; certification for use; dispensing.

Chief patron: Sen Siobhan Dunnavant R-12

CBD oil and THC-A oil; certification for use; dispensing. Provides that a practitioner may issue a written certification for the use of cannabidiol oil or THC-A oil for the treatment or to alleviate the symptoms of any diagnosed condition or disease determined by the practitioner to benefit from such use. Under current law, a practitioner may only issue such certification for the treatment or to alleviate the symptoms of intractable epilepsy. This bill is a recommendation of the Joint Commission on Health Care.

Virginia NORML supports the passage of this bill.

 

SB 788 CBD oil and THC-A oil; certification for use; dispensing.

Chief patron: Sen David Marsden D-37

CBD oil and THC-A oil; certification for use; dispensing. Provides that a practitioner may issue a written certification for the use of cannabidiol oil or THC-A oil for the treatment or to alleviate the symptoms of any diagnosed condition or disease. Under current law, a practitioner may only issue such certification for the treatment or to alleviate the symptoms of intractable epilepsy. The bill increases the supply of CBD oil or THC-A oil a pharmaceutical processor may dispense from a 30-day supply to a 90-day supply. The bill reduces the minimum amount of cannabidiol or tetrahydrocannabinol acid per milliliter for a dilution of the Cannabis plant to fall under the definition of CBD oil or THC-A oil, respectively. The bill provides that any agent or employee of a pharmaceutical processor is authorized to deliver CBD oil or THC-A oil. Finally, the bill provides that no agent or employee of a pharmaceutical processor can be prosecuted for the possession or manufacture of marijuana or the possession, manufacture, or distribution of CBD oil or THC-A oil if such agent or employee is acting in accordance with certain statutes and regulations. Under current law, such agents and employees may be prosecuted but it is considered an affirmative defense if such agents or employees act in accordance with such statutes and regulations.

Virginia NORML supports the passage of this bill.

 

SB 795 CBD oil and THC-A oil; certification for use; dispensing.

Chief patron: Sen Siobhan Dunnavant R-12

CBD oil and THC-A oil; certification for use; dispensing. Provides that a practitioner may issue a written certification for the use of cannabidiol oil or THC-A oil for the treatment or to alleviate the symptoms of any diagnosed condition or disease determined by the practitioner to benefit from such use. Under current law, a practitioner may only issue such certification for the treatment or to alleviate the symptoms of intractable epilepsy. The bill also reduces the minimum amount of cannabidiol or tetrahydrocannabinol acid per milliliter for a dilution of the Cannabis plant to fall under the definition of CBD oil or THC-A oil, respectively.

Virginia NORML supports the passage of this bill.


Other

  

HB 88 Marijuana field test; evidence at trial.

Chief patron: Del Patrick Hope D-47

Marijuana field test; evidence at trial. Provides that a law-enforcement officer is permitted to testify as to the results of any field test approved by the Department of Forensic Science regarding whether or not any plant material is marijuana in any trial for a misdemeanor offense of possession of marijuana with intent to distribute. Under current law, such testimony is allowed only in any trial for simple possession of marijuana.

Virginia NORML currently takes no position on this bill.

 

HB 188 Sentence reduction; substantial assistance to prosecution.

Chief patron: Del Chris Collins R-29

Sentence reduction; substantial assistance to prosecution. Allows a convicted person's sentence to be reduced if such person provides substantial assistance, defined in the bill, in the furtherance of the investigation or prosecution of another person engaged in an act of violence or for offenses involving the manufacture or distribution of controlled substances or marijuana. Sentence reduction can occur only upon motion of the attorney for the Commonwealth.

Virginia NORML currently takes no position on this bill.

 

HB 203 Sentence reduction; substantial assistance to prosecution.

Chief patron: Del Mike Mullin D-93

Sentence reduction; substantial assistance to prosecution. Allows a convicted person's sentence to be reduced if such person provides substantial assistance, defined in the bill, in the furtherance of the investigation or prosecution of another person engaged in an act of violence or for offenses involving the manufacture or distribution of controlled substances or marijuana. Sentence reduction can occur only upon motion of the attorney for the Commonwealth.

Virginia NORML currently takes no position on this bill.

 

HB 595 Overdoses; safe reporting.

Chief patron: Del Betsy Carr D-69

Safe reporting of overdoses. Extends to an individual experiencing a drug-related or alcohol-related overdose the affirmative defense to prosecution for (i) simple possession of a controlled substance, marijuana, or controlled paraphernalia; (ii) intoxication in public; or (iii) the unlawful purchase, possession, or consumption of alcohol, if another individual, in good faith, sought or obtained emergency medical attention for the individual experiencing the overdose. Under current law, the affirmative defense applies only to an individual who sought or obtained emergency medical attention for another individual experiencing an overdose or to an individual who sought or obtained emergency medical attention for himself.

Virginia NORML supports the passage of this bill.

 

HB 645 Strip searches; authorized search of certain misdemeanants, etc.

Chief patron: Del Patrick Hope D-47

Strip searches of certain misdemeanants, etc. Authorizes the strip search of a person in custodial arrest for a traffic infraction, a Class 3 or Class 4 misdemeanor, or a local ordinance punishable by no more than 30 days in jail for a controlled substance if a law-enforcement officer has reasonable cause to believe that such person is concealing such substance. Currently, only strip searches of such persons for weapons is allowed.

Virginia NORML opposes the passage of this bill.

 

SB 35 Sentence reduction; substantial assistance to prosecution.

Chief patron: Sen William Stanley R-20
House patrons: Del Kaye Kory D-38

Sentence reduction; substantial assistance to prosecution. Allows a convicted person's sentence to be reduced if such person provides substantial assistance, defined in the bill, in the furtherance of the investigation or prosecution of another person engaged in an act of violence or for offenses involving the manufacture or distribution of controlled substances or marijuana. Sentence reduction can occur only upon motion of the attorney for the Commonwealth.

Virginia NORML currently takes no position on this bill.

 

SB 40 Marijuana; reduced penalties for distribution or possession with intent to distribute.

Chief patron: Sen Barbara Favola D-31
Senate patrons: Sen Mamie Locke D-2
House patrons: Del Kaye Kory D-38

Marijuana; reduced penalties for distribution or possession with intent to distribute. Raises the threshold amount of marijuana subject to the offense of distribution or possession with intent to distribute from one-half ounce to one ounce. The bill also reduces the criminal penalties for distribution of or possession with intent to distribute certain greater weights of marijuana and creates a rebuttable presumption that a person who possesses no more than one ounce of marijuana possesses it for personal use.

Virginia NORML supports the passage of this bill.

 

SB 68 Strip searches; authorized search of certain misdemeanants, etc.

Chief patron: Sen Janet Howell D-32
House patrons: Del Kaye Kory D-38

Strip searches of certain misdemeanants, etc. Authorizes the strip search of a person in custodial arrest for a traffic infraction, a Class 3 or Class 4 misdemeanor, or a local ordinance punishable by no more than 30 days in jail for controlled substances, marijuana, or other contraband if a law-enforcement officer has reasonable cause to believe that such person is concealing any of these items. Currently, only strip searches of such persons for weapons is allowed.

Virginia NORML opposes the passage of this bill.

 

SB 203 Food stamp eligibility; drug-related felonies.

Chief patron: Sen Barbara Favola D-31

Food stamp eligibility; drug-related felonies. Provides that a person who is otherwise eligible to receive food stamp benefits shall not be denied such assistance solely because he has been convicted of a first-time felony offense of possession with intent to distribute more than one-half ounce but not more than five pounds of marijuana, provided that he complies with all obligations imposed by the criminal court and the Department of Social Services, is actively engaged in or has completed substance abuse treatment, and participates in drug screenings. Current law prohibits denial of such benefits only if such persons have been convicted of felony possession of a controlled substance.

Virginia NORML supports the passage of this bill.

 

SB 204 TANF; eligibility, drug-related felonies.

Chief patron: Sen Barbara Favola D-31
House patrons: Del Vivian Watts D-39

Eligibility for TANF; drug-related felonies. Provides that a person who is otherwise eligible to receive Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) shall not be denied assistance solely because he has been convicted of a first-time felony offense of possession of a controlled substance, provided that he complies with all obligations imposed by the court and the Department of Social Services, is actively engaged in or has completed a substance abuse treatment program, and participates in drug screenings. The bill provides that a person who fails or refuses to participate in periodic drug testing or who tests positive for the use of illegal substances shall be ineligible to receive TANF benefits for a period of 12 months; however, such person is given one opportunity during the 12-month period to comply with the testing requirement and be reinstated to eligibility for TANF benefits.

Virginia NORML supports the passage of this bill.