Governor Kim Reynolds has taken action on a host of bills, including three that deal with marijuana, alcohol and cigarettes.
When bars and restaurants were closed this spring due to the pandemic, Governor Reynolds issued a proclamation allowing the sale of carry-out cocktails in addition to take-out food. Now, Iowa has become the first state to permanently allow bars and restaurants to sell mixed drinks to go.
The governor has also signed a bill into law that changes the state’s medical marijuana program. The new 90-day dosage maximum is 4.5 grams of THC — the active ingredient in cannabis and physicians assistants, nurse practitioners and podiatrists may now sign the paperwork so Iowans can legally buy cannabis products at state-licensed dispensaries. Post-traumatic stress and severe intractable autism are now on the list of conditions for which medical professionals may recommend cannabis as a treatment.
Reynolds has also signed the bill that raises the legal age for buying tobacco products from 18 to 21. It mirrors a recent federal change, lets local officials start ticketing violators and ensures Iowa doesn’t lose $3.2 million in federal funding for substance abuse programs.
Penalties for animal abuse will be increased by another bill the governor signed. She’s also approved creation of a “blue alert” similar to “amber alerts” for suspected of child kidnapping. A blue alert will go out statewide if someone in law enforcement has been seriously injured or killed and there’s a threat to the public from a suspect or suspects who haven’t been arrested.