In the waning hours of the session numerous bills were passed as soon as the votes were obtained to pass the budget. These include:
- Passage of the CBD w/5% THC bill. This bill does not make that substance legal to possess, it creates an affirmative defense for anyone who possesses a letter from a Kansas physician stating it they or their child have a “chronic disease or medical condition causing a serious impairment of strength or ability to function, including one that produces seizures.” It remains illegal to sell, produce, or distribute CBD with THC in Kansas. They added several amendments we had requested including a requirement the person have the letter in their possession anytime they were in possession of the substance and a requirement to show the letter to law enforcement. They also amended the definition to accommodate available testing at the KBI lab making the 5% THC content relative to the CBD content. [SB28]
- Passage of a scrap metal bill which will finally create the statewide database sought in legislation passed in 2015. There were several concessions made to scrap metal dealers during the process, but those will not hinder the tools for addressing these crimes. [HB2248]
- Passage of amendments relating to animal cruelty cases and recovery of cost of care and treatment of the animals involved. [SB20]
- The creation of a Closed Case Task Force to implement processes to assure CODIS hits on DNA are properly responded to by all parties involved. [HB2290]
- The creation of a Criminal Justice Reform Commission with a charge to review a very wide variety of criminal justice issues and make recommendations. These include consideration of modifications to the sentencing grid, sentencing proportionality, probation and parole supervision, community corrections programs, and other matters. A sheriff and chief will be appointed by the Attorney General to serve on the commission. [HB2290]
- Modifications of the quick dip sanctions and eliminating the 120-day and 180-day sanctions. Amendments were made as recommended in our testimony. [SB18]
For other bills and additional information see the reports at the link referenced above. The reports will be updated as the Governor takes action on the pending bills.
I will provide a more robust final report once everything is finalized.
Feel free to e-mail me if you have questions about any legislative matter.