Friend’s bills on cannabidiol oil, jail funding pass out of House of Representatives

Last Updated on February 26, 2017 by cassnetwork

STATEHOUSE  – State Rep. Bill Friend’s (R-Macy) legislation to allow the use of cannabidiol (CBD) oil for severe epilepsy passed out of the Indiana House of Representatives Tuesday with a vote of 98-0.

House Bill 1148 would allow a person to possess CBD oil if they or their child have been diagnosed with severe epilepsy, and they meet certain commonsense safety requirements. Friend said CBD oil is a compound refined from industrial hemp that has a wide scope of medical applications, including the control of epilepsy and seizures.

“Allowing CBD oil would provide desperate parents another possible treatment for their children,” Friend said. “Many families have exhausted all of their options trying to find the right medication to effectively relieve the symptoms of juvenile epilepsy without some of the dangerous side effects. Under this legislation, parents and physicians would be able to explore CBD oil as a treatment option without the threat of prosecution.”

Friend said CBD oil, while derived from industrial hemp, has extremely low levels of tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, so it cannot be used as a recreational drug. CBD oil has shown documented effectiveness in helping manage the symptoms of otherwise persistent conditions of epilepsy, such as Dravet Syndrome and Lennox-Gastaut Syndrome.

House Bill 1148 can now be considered by the Senate. Visit iga.in.gov to learn more about this legislation.

State Rep. Bill Friend’s (R-Macy) legislation to provide Miami County with flexibility in how it funds the maintenance and operation costs of its county jail passed out of the House of Representatives with a vote of 84-12.

“Several years ago, special legislation was needed for Miami County to build a new jail,” Friend said. “We were able to finance the project through the enactment of a specific county option income tax. Originally, that COIT was only able to be used for capital projects. After recently refinancing the bond at a lower interest rate, the county is now experiencing a surplus in this account. With my legislation, Miami County would be able to use this surplus to help pay for the maintenance and operation costs of the original capital investment: the jail facility.”

Friend said this added flexibility would relieve the pressure on property taxes and free up money in the general fund that could be used for other county government obligations, such as road projects and public safety efforts.

House Bill 1142 can now be considered by the Senate. Visit iga.in.gov to learn more about this legislation.