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HB 577 - CBD oil legalization and regulation

HB 577 - CBD oil legalization and regulation

Phil Haunschild
February 23, 2018

Bill description: HB 577 would legalize the use of cannabidiol (CBD) oil for medicinal purposes.

Rating: +2

Does it directly or indirectly create or increase penalties for victimless crimes or non-restorative penalties for non- violent crimes? Conversely, does it eliminate or decrease penalties for victimless crimes or non-restorative penalties for non-violent crimes? 

If enacted, HB 577 would legalize the use of cannabis-extracted CBD oil for medicinal purposes. To use CBD oil, a patient would need a signed statement from a physician or neurologist that the CBD oil would have substantial health benefits for the patient.

CBD oil is listed under Idaho’s Uniform Controlled Substances Act as a derivative of the cannabis plant. This act places all cannabis derivatives under Schedule I, the most restrictive drug classification. What is not recognized, however, is the fact that CBD oil is not psychoactive. CBD oil bears only trace elements of THC, the chemical that produces the high associated with marijuana use. Nevertheless, an individual charged with simple possession of CBD oil with these trace amounts of THC could be convicted of a misdemeanor, sentenced up to one year in prison, and fined up to $1,000.

HB 577 would allow patients and their doctors to determine what treatment is best.


Does it give government any new, additional, or expanded power to prohibit, restrict, or regulate activities in the free market? Conversely, does it eliminate or reduce government intervention in the market?

The vast majority of states have legalized CBD oil for their residents’ medicinal use, including every state bordering Idaho. HB 577 would put Idaho in line with the majority of states and would allow residents access to the medicinal benefits of CBD oil.

Though HB 577 would regulate the sale and use of CBD oil by requiring a doctor’s approval, the legislation would provide an avenue for its legal use where there is none currently. Individuals who require medicine that contains CBD oil must cross state lines to buy their medicine legally in Idaho’s bordering states or another where it is legal.


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