SHERIDAN — The Wyoming Joint Judiciary Committee decreased the amount of edible marijuana that would qualify as a felony from 8 ounces down to 3 ounces.
The decision occurred after deliberations Tuesday at the Mars Agriculture Center at Sheridan College. The group of legislators heard from Sheridan Police Chief Rich Adriaens, Sen. Bruce Burns, R-Sheridan, and president of the Wyoming Association of Sheriffs and Chiefs of Police Byron Oedekoven about the effects of edible marijuana.
Burns came to testify in front of the committee, along with Rep. Charles Pelkey, D-Albany, who serves on the committee but attended via conference call.
Both voiced concerns about including the weight of non-THC materials when weighing for felony amounts of THC in edibles. The committee invited members of the testing facility to speak on the feasibility of extracting THC from products used in making edibles, but no one was present to testify.
“We’ve requested updates and I’ll tell you every time they show up, the industry’s still working on it, there’s not a reliable, accurate way to test at the level the court’s expecting,” said committee co-chairman Rep. Dan Kirkbride, R-Platte.
Pelkey made a motion to direct the committee to discuss the potential of weighing THC content separate from non-criminal materials, such as eggs, butter and flour. The action did not carry due to a majority no vote.
Forbes and the Denver Post both published articles regarding marijuana edibles. Forbes reported that a study in the Journal of the American Medical Association in 2015 found that only 17 percent of the edibles the authors tested had accurate THC labelling. The JAMA paper analyzed samples using a standard technique for measuring THC, called high-performance liquid chromatography (HLPC), Forbes reported.
The Denver Post conducted its own testing through Steep Hill Halent of Colorado and found 10 of the 13 edibles tested came back with less THC content than what was labeled.
Possession of more than 3 ounces of marijuana results in a felony conviction in Sheridan County. The drafted legislation outlining regulations of marijuana edibles now sits at 3 ounces as well, but may see changes if legislators hear back from testing facilities in Wyoming at the joint judiciary committee’s Nov. 17 meeting in Wheatland.