WV. Senate passes House revisions of bill to legalize medical …

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – The W.Va. Senate has passed a bill making medical marijuana legal in the state.
Senate Bill 386 passed the Senate with a 28-6 vote Wednesday.
After passing the bill, the Senate requested the House of Delegates to concur.

Marijuana graphic by MGN.

The bill would require the State’s Bureau of Public Health to oversee medical marijuana in the state and it would also ban patients from growing their own marijuana, among other things.

UPDATE: April 4, 2017, 6:13 P.M.

A bill that would allow patients with certain debilitating conditions to access medical marijuana if their doctors recommend it was approved by the West Virginia House of Delegates on Tuesday. SB 386 passed 76-24 on third reading after being revised on second reading.

“The Legislature has answered the prayers of many seriously ill West Virginians and their families,” said Matt Simon of the Marijuana Policy Project, who is a West Virginia native and graduate of West Virginia University. “This could be life-saving legislation for some patients. We commend House members for working diligently to make sure it passes this year, but we urge the Legislature to continue efforts to make sure the program truly works for the seriously ill and to ensure it does not unnecessarily drive up costs.”

SB 386 was originally introduced by Sen. Richard Ojeda (D-Logan) in the Senate, where it was approved 28-6 last week. The House version of the bill, which is titled the West Virginia Medical Cannabis Act, would charge the Bureau of Public Health with regulating medical marijuana growers, processors, and dispensaries, while the Senate version would set up a 16-member independent commission. Under the amended House bill, patients with specifically listed qualifying medical conditions could use extracts, tinctures, and other preparations of marijuana, but not marijuana in flower or leaf form. This differs from the Senate version of the bill and most of the other state medical marijuana programs.

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