Medical Marijuana News Update in Pennsylvania:
Pennsylvania is not yet a state in which medical marijuana has been made legal, and recent action in the legislature is doing little to reach this end. Although the Senate recently approved a bill that would make medicinal marijuana legal in the state of Pennsylvania, the House was not as supportive. Despite the House vote being the last step prior to the Governor’s signature, House members were not comfortable with the current bill which is why new amendments are being presented. These new amendments will need to be reviewed again and will ultimately slow the bill’s progression through the legislature. Time is not necessarily something some patients have in abundance, and so the amendment additions are a source of great frustration for those waiting on medicine. Medicinal marijuana is currently approved in 23 states in the U.S. Pennsylvania continues to wait to join this list.
Senate Bill 3 Medical Marijuana News Review:
SB3 passed the Senate in Pa. by a 40-7 vote. According to polling, approximately 90 percent of Pa. residents support medical marijuana in Pa. and there has been bi-partisan support for approval. For weeks after it passed through the Senate, the bill just sat without action. State Representative Matt Baker said there was a lack of research showing benefits of medical marijuana and thus refused to allow a vote on the issue. Now, additional amendments further stall the bill’s progression. Over 100 amendments were added to the medical marijuana bill which will need reviewed.
Marsico Believes Amendment Will Help Bill Find Support:
Although some believe that the amendments to Senate Bill 3 are not needed and only stall its progression through the House, others believe that the Bill would not make it through the House without the amendments. Representative Ron Marsico (R-Dauphin) is responsible for one of the amendments. Marisco’s amendment would cap the allowed levels of THC and smoking marijuana would not be allowed under the amendment. Marsico believes this amendment is important and will be favored by some of the more conservative members of the House. Some conservative members of the House believe that smoking marijuana for medicinal purposes is too similar to how marijuana is smoked for recreational purposes. Marsico believes his amendment will alleviate concerns and therefore gain approval and votes. Marsico believes his amendment will help advance Senate Bill 3. Thousands of patients in the state of Pa. are counting on it.