Senate Majority Leader Gary Cammack, R-Union Center, has said he had “serious concerns” about the IM 26 implementation and that there is not enough control over the product to protect children.

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Mentele said IM 26 proponents also do not want children smoking marijuana, and that it was “common sense” that children’s medicinal cannabis would not be smokeable. It is unfortunate that opponents assume otherwise, she said, but if further conversation is required to assuage people’s fears, she is willing to have that conversation.

Mentele pointed out that while concern for children’s access to marijuana is high, children already have access to other, more common substances such as alcohol.

Noem said she has not yet decided to call a special legislative session to work out issues with the measure as written. She said her office would be spending a lot of time with the Departments of Public Safety, Health, and Revenue to work on implementing IM 26 safely.

“That’s the challenge that I have in front of me now is how do we take IM 26 and do it in a responsible manner and be fair? And that’s why I wanted stakeholders to have time to weigh in,” Noem said. “I certainly understand the desire of the public wanting to have a medical marijuana program, just, I want to do it responsibly.”

Mentele said the state’s role in promulgating rules and regulations is, in reality, minimal, as the 95-section measure only requires them to set 10 rules — the rest are already included in IM 26.