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Pennsylvania takes steps to Legalize Medical Marijuana; House and Senate Work on Marijuana Legalization in 2015

Medicinal and Recreational Marijuana Use in the State of Pennsylvania:

The state of Pennsylvania has not yet taken steps to legalize recreational marijuana, but it is moving forward with steps to legalize medicinal marijuana.  Pennsylvania may soon join the growing list of states across the nation that approve the distribution and use of medicinal marijuana.  With the number of states that have already approved medicinal marijuana, it seems practically inevitable that Pennsylvania will soon join their ranks.  Approval in the Senate and the House are necessary steps.  Right now, Pennsylvania’s governor Tom Wolf, supports the legalization of medical marijuana.  Certain members of the House though are not so accommodating.

Senate Approved legislation that gives access to Medicinal Marijuana in the state of Pa.:

Last Spring, the Senate approved legislation that would grant residents with access to a physician’s recommendation permission to use marijuana.  Certain conditions applied though.  The medical patient conditions that have been granted permission to treat with medicinal marijuana include cancer, epilepsy, multiple sclerosis and post-traumatic stress disorder.  This legislation that passed through the Senate was the second attempt.  The first attempt to approve medical marijuana passed the Senate but then died off in the House.  This second attempt by the Senate passed 40-7 with every Democrat voting yes and 21 of 28 Republicans voting yes.  The legislation waits now for House action.

House Review of Medical Marijuana in the State of Pa.:

Although the House of Representatives in Pennsylvania has not formally approved legislation that will legalize medicinal marijuana use in the state, it has taken action that could ultimately lead to that end.  A minority of House members have formed to examine issues pertaining medicinal marijuana use and have issued recommendations as a result.  Currently, 36 other states, as well as Washington D.C., have legalized some form of medical marijuana.

One House representative though does not sound too optimistic.  Pennsylvania Rep. Ron Marsico has stated that more work needs to happen on the “details” of the legislation and this work could prolong the process.  It is not guaranteed that the House will vote on this prior to the end of 2015.


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