It is beyond disheartening to find yet another legislative audit report pointing to troubles in a state-run program, this time the medical marijuana operation. The audit found a troubling lack of controls in what should be considered key areas. First, the program failed to perform ongoing verification on the licenses and eligibility of new patients’ doctors. That’s a fundamental responsibility of the state, and it’s critical to instilling confidence in those who use medical marijuana and those who authorize it.
A second area involves tracking and testing the drug before it’s sold. Quality assurance should be a distinguishing factor that makes medical cannabis preferable to the illegal, medically questionable, but still often cheaper, street variety.
In their report, the Office of the Legislative Auditor wrote that the Health Department’s internal controls “were generally not adequate to safeguard financial assets and ensure compliance with selected legal requirements for the medical cannabis program.”