MaineHousing should not ban medical marijuana

October 20th, 2012 by admin Leave a reply »

The Maine State Housing Authority has agreed to let tenants in subsidized housing continue using and growing medical marijuana at home for another six months – and hopefully, permanently.

The agency announced earlier this month that it would no longer allow people who use rental assistance to possess, use or cultivate medical marijuana in apartments where rent and utilities are federally subsidized under the program known as Section 8, according to a prepared statement from the authority, dated Oct. 3.

The statement went on to say, “MaineHousing recently became aware of a few Section 8 voucher holders who use, possess or cultivate medical marijuana in their Section 8 units. These tenants have been notified about the new policy and given the opportunity to comply with it. … Federal law prohibits illegal controlled substances such as marijuana in Section 8-subsidized housing units. In regards to medical marijuana use, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, which oversees the federal HCV program, does not allow public housing authorities such as MaineHousing to admit a medical marijuana user into the program.

“The federal agency does allow public housing authorities in states with medical marijuana laws to set their own policy to address current Section 8 voucher holders who are certified to use medical marijuana.”

Following the announcement, the American Civil Liberties Union of Maine and state Rep. Deborah Sanderson asked the Maine Housing board to reverse its decision to ask them to patients to stop legally using medical marijuana or risk eviction.

Alysia Melnick, an

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