The Phoenix New Times Reports..

State Representative Jay Lawrence (R-Fountain Hills) has withdrawn his bill that could have destroyed Arizona’s medical-marijuana program.

Lawrence’s bill, HCR 2019, would have stripped naturopaths and homeopaths of the right to recommend medical marijuana, even though those doctors write nearly 90 percent of the recommendations. His plan also called for patients to renew their cards every six months instead of every year, paying double the annual fees.

“We received so many calls,” he tells New Times. “I had heard anecdotally that [the cards] are handed out wildly. I learned from the callers that there is a lot more care taken by naturopaths than I had originally been told.”

Hundreds of people called his office, he says, and he spoke to 30 or 40 of them. He also spoke to dispensary operators.

“I became more sympathetic when I learned it’s not just a gimme,” he says. Most patients “are not getting a pass. “[Naturopaths and homeopaths] are legitimately getting medical records.”

Lawrence says he’s still concerned about minors given marijuana by patients. Told that the Arizona Medical Marijuana Act already prohibits that, he says he’d like to see that part “enforced.”

“I’m glad that this is over now, as you might imagine,” he adds.