An Arizona judge has declined the latest effort by Arizona medical marijuana cardholders to require the Arizona Department of Health Services (ADHS) to reduce the steep and superfluous $150 annual fee for a medical marijuana card.
Maricopa Superior Court Judge Jo Lynn Gentry agreed that the ADHS is collecting more than it needs to operate the state’s medical marijuana program, Capitol Media Services reports.
Capitol Media Services obtained documents revealing that during this fiscal year the ADHS has collected nearly $20 million in fees, while it’s expenses during that time are less than $8 million. And, it gets worse, the ADHS is currently sitting on a surplus of over $30 million dollars that it knowingly does not need, yet it still won’t reduce the excessive fees to a reasonable rate.
“The only way the court could determine what fee meets the sufficiency requirements of the AMMA [Arizona Medical Marijuana Act] and the constitution would be to take over the administration of the AMMA from DHS [Arizona Department of Health Services],” said Judge Gentry.