North Carolina Senate Approves Medical Pot Bill

North Carolina Senate Approves Medical Pot Bill

The North Carolina Senate this week approved a bill to legalize marijuana, making it a step closer to consideration in the state House of Representatives. The bill is entitled North Carolina’s Compassionate Care Act (Senate Bill 3) passed easily in a 36-10 vote in the state Senate on Tuesday with little debate. The bipartisan bill was introduced on his Jan. 25 by Republican Senators Bill Rayvon and Michael Lee and Democratic Senator Paul Lowe.

“The purpose of this bill is to ensure that medical marijuana is strictly regulated and used only by people with debilitating illnesses.” Lavon said on the Senate floor before Tuesday’s vote.

“The recreational sale or use of marijuana is still illegal under this law,” he added.

If signed into law, the bill would allow cannabis for patients with one or more specific serious medical conditions, including cancer, ALS, Parkinson’s disease, epilepsy, multiple sclerosis, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). legalize the medical use of But unlike many other states’ more comprehensive medical marijuana programs, this bill does not legalize medical marijuana use by patients diagnosed with chronic pain.

Before the bill was approved last week by the Senate Judiciary Committee, the bill’s sponsors stressed that the bill would not legalize recreational marijuana. and its physicians are to make changes only to existing state laws necessary to protect them from criminal and civil penalties, and are not intended to change current civil and criminal statutes regarding nonmedical marijuana use. ,” Lavon told reporters February 21st.

Under the bill, patients with eligible “debilitating medical conditions” would be allowed to use medical marijuana. The bill allows smoking and vaping of medical cannabis by patients whose physicians recommend certain forms and dosages of medical marijuana. Physicians must annually confirm a patient’s continued eligibility for a medical marijuana program. Smoking medical marijuana in public or near schools or churches is not legal under the bill.

The measure would require patients and qualified caregivers to obtain medical marijuana ID cards from the state. According to the bill’s language, the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services is responsible for creating “a secure and confidential electronic database containing information about eligible patients, designated caregivers, and physicians.” The bill also creates her 11-member advisory committee appointed by the governor and legislators to consider proposals for new eligible medical conditions.

North Carolina Bill Creates Oversight Board

Additionally, the law establishes a Medical Cannabis Production Commission to oversee medical marijuana producers and ensure an adequate supply of medical marijuana for the state’s registered patients. The law allows up to 10 companies to grow, process and sell cannabis, and allows each producer to operate up to eight medical marijuana dispensaries. Under the bill, the state would impose a 10% tax on each medical cannabis producer’s monthly income. The bill also requires regulators to establish a tracking system to monitor the production, movement and sale of cannabis products from growers to consumers.

“These suppliers must meet strict requirements on how they find and operate their facilities, how they grow their cannabis, how they package and sell their inventory,” Rayvon said on the Senate floor. . “Every product should be tracked, from seed to sale.”

Only one lawmaker, Republican Senator Jim Burgin, opposed the bill on Tuesday, saying “marijuana is not a drug” and that it is not federally approved for medicinal use.

“It’s bad for children,” Virgin said. “This bill establishes a big government and I think it could easily be changed to legalize the recreational use of marijuana,” he added.

Senate Majority Leader Phil Berger, one of the 16 Republicans who voted in favor of the bill, worked hard to reach consensus among his colleagues before the bill was voted on by the entire Senate. He praised supporters of other bills.

“The lack of debate on the floor shows how much effort Senator Lavon and other sponsors have made over the past two years to inform people of what the bill does, answer questions, and amend the wording. It reflects a lot,” Berger said. .

Senate Bill 3 still faces one more vote in the North Carolina Senate before it heads to the state House for consideration. Republican House Speaker Tim Moore said the bill had some support in the House, according to an Associated Press report. If passed by both houses of Congress, the bill will go to the desk of Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper, who has shown support for legalizing medical marijuana and decriminalizing the possession of small amounts of cannabis by adults.

Alexandra Solorio
Introducing Alexandra, an accomplished cannabis writer who has passionately pursued her craft for a decade. Through a decade-long journey, Alexandra has cultivated a profound connection with the cannabis world, translating her expertise into captivating prose. From unraveling the plant's rich history to exploring its therapeutic marvels and legal evolution, she has adeptly catered to both connoisseurs and newcomers. An unwavering advocate, Alexandra's words not only enlighten but also advocate responsible cannabis use, establishing her as an indispensable industry voice over the past ten years.

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