On Wednesday, Gov. Mary Fallin enacted 3 emergency measures which the Oklahoma Board of Health have forwarded to her office. Her lack of prudence created a liability upon the state which would easily have been avoided.
The entire state could have avoided a forthcoming state lawsuit against the enacted measures had Fallin used just a little discretion in her rush to enact the 3 separate actions of the Oklahoma Board of Health.
The first measure was an approval of the final draft of Emergency Rules published on July 8th by the legal staff of the Board of Health, under the direction of Interim Director Tom Bates and Legal Council Julie Ezell, with the exception of sections 310:681-1-4(definitions), and 310:681-2-11(Restrictions on Smokable Medical Marijuana and Medical Marijuana Products).
The second measure was an 'audible' motion by Dr. Skillings (who just joined the board at that hour). He read a list of approved forms of products.
Had Fallin sent back the second & third items of business on emergency rules and instructed the board & agency staff to conduct the standard public comment process and research that all other rules have been refined by, then a more prudent and wiser product of the board would result. the board could have done so at their August 10th Board Meeting, with plenty of time to enact before the August 25th implementation date.
It ends up that Dr. Gerard (a Durant Emergency Medicine physician) was quite wrong in his speculation. The public broadly supports everything the Health Dept. Staff produced. The Legislature, the Cannabis Trade Associations, the civil rights groups on the left & right, all the candidates for governor, legal advocacy groups, and the select group of physicians most experienced in cannabis medicines.
It seems that only socialized medicine bureaucrats, big pharma, and hospital corporations are praising the 2 untimely amendments that the board approved. Most of the Board of Health members are also members of physicians associations and/or hospital corporations.
The justifications quoted by the Board President (Dr. Starkey) is that the board is mandated to protect the health of Oklahoma. Starkey argued that that mandate somehow overrides the statutory law that the voters enacted. They seems to take that as justification to trump any other constitutional body. Perhaps the 'god-complex' of doctors is worse than we thought.
Cannabis Vapor Ban
Here's the original final draft language of 310:681-2-11, presented to the Board of health, and below it is the language that the board amended, in separate board actions.
Pharmacist Staffing Mandate
Here's the original final draft language of 310:681-1-4 - Dispensary Manager, presented to the Board of health, and below it is the language that the board amended, in separate board actions.