Lawmakers mull marijuana limit for drivers
Category: Medical Marijuana | Posted on Mon, February, 4th 2013 by THCFinder
DENVER • After three consecutive attempts to get a legal limit on the books for driving stoned, House Republican Leader Mark Waller says this is the year for a small compromise and legislative success.
“We needed it before with the proliferation of medical marijuana,” Waller, of Colorado Springs said. “We’re seeing traffic accidents and fatalities go up as it relates to marijuana being a factor. We need this legislation with the passage of Amendment 64, and we absolutely need to protect our citizens on Colorado roads.”
The bill faces two important hurdles Tuesday when it is heard in the House Judiciary Committee and the governor’s Amendment 64 task force will consider endorsing the legislation. The task force is responsible for recommending regulations to lawmakers for voter approved recreational marijuana use.
HB114 measure would define driving under the influence of marijuana as a driver’s blood containing 5 nanograms or more of the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana, delta 9-tetrahydrocannabinol, better known as THC.
Blood tests given after a DUI arrest can determine the level of active THC similar to a blood tests used to determine whether a driver’s blood exceeds the .08 blood alcohol limit for drunken driving.
Opponents of past marijuana-driving measures have said the THC limit can be erroneous. A person could be over the threshold, but not actually be high because of varying tolerance levels and effects of the drug.
Waller says this year he has a compromise that could draw enough support from Democrats to pass both the House and the Senate.
The compromise is a variance in how the law is written.
Now, if a driver tests over the .08 limit for alcohol in 100 milliliters of blood, they are presumed to be under the influence of alcohol. That presumption means in the court of law, the driver can only argue the test was inaccurate as a defense. Drivers cannot say they have a high tolerance and are not drunk at that threshold. Past laws have mirrored that for the DUI pot law.
Read more: http://www.gazette.com
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