Plaintiffs Drop Lawsuit Over Utah’s Medical Cannabis Initiative

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Advocacy group Together for Responsible Use and Cannabis Education announced plans Sept. 14 to drop its lawsuit challenging the Utah Legislature’s decision to replace Proposition 2, the voter-approved initiative that legalized medical cannabis in the state, with its own law in 2018, The Salt Lake Tribune reported.

The group initially sued Gov. Gary Herbert and Department of Health Director Dr. Joseph Miner in December 2018, shortly after lawmakers’ compromise bill, which made several key changes to Proposition 2, cleared the legislature and was signed into law by Herbert.

The lawsuit sought to declare the legislature’s replacement for Prop. 2 unconstitutional, but Together for Responsible Use and Cannabis Education spokeswoman Christine Stenquist told The Salt Lake Tribune that the group decided to drop the case because it was unable to continue paying legal costs.

“While this lawsuit is coming to an end, the fight for a real medical cannabis system for the state of Utah, which will meet all patient needs, continues,” Stenquist told the news outlet, adding that the case did force lawmakers to remove sections of the revised law that advocates for Proposition 2 said would curtail cannabis distribution against voters’ will.

Although Together for Responsible Use and Cannabis Education does not have the funds to continue fighting its legal battle, Stenquist is urging a “broad coalition” of other interest groups in Utah to unite and pick up where the case left off, The Salt Lake Tribune reported.

And because the lawsuit was dismissed “without prejudice,” it can be refiled at any time, according to the news outlet.

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