Proposal to deny firearms ID cards to medical pot users is nixed

Written By Becky Schlikerman Posted: 04/16/2014, 07:14pm

A proposed rule that would have barred medical marijuana patients from obtaining Firearm Owner’s Identification cards has been nixed, The Chicago Sun-Times has learned. 

Illinois officials had posted preliminary rules for the implementation of the Illinois Medical Cannabis Pilot Program that barred medical marijuana users or their caregivers from obtaining a FOID card if they were part of the pilot program. 

But in rules that will be officially filed for review later this week, that provision has been removed, sources said.

It was not immediately known if the same provision regarding Concealed Carry Weapons Permits had also been removed.

Illinois Department of Public Health officials said the official rules are expected to be published Friday.

But how the change in the rules impacts medical marijuana users and their ability to legally own a gun is still murky to some, though not to federal officials.

Under federal law, which regulates gun dealers, anyone who uses a controlled substance, including marijuana, is prohibited from owning or possessing a firearm or ammunition, said Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives spokesman Thomas Ahern.

“Under federal law, anyone who is using marijuana, regardless of whether his or her state has passed legislation authorizing marijuana use … the person under ATF law is considered an unlawful user,” he said.

The rules now go to the Joint Committee on Administrative Rules, which would have to review and approve the rules after a 45-day public comment period.


Twitter: @schlikerman

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