This article discusses how the North Carolina Senate is scheduled to vote on whether to legalize medical marijuana this week. If passed, it would be one step closer to becoming law. There is growing support for the bill among both Republicans and Democrats in the state, and if it passes the House, it would be the second state in the US to legalize medical marijuana. – The bill has been introduced by seven legislators from Charlotte, and if it passes a floor vote in the Senate on Tuesday, it would be passed to the House. A separate bill was introduced in the state Senate on Tuesday that would limit medical marijuana to a small number of conditions and require it to be dispensed through pharmacies. If this bill passes, North Carolina would become the third state in the US to legalize medical marijuana. There is also strong bipartisan support for recreational use of marijuana in North Carolina, but so far no bills have been introduced in either chamber.
However, a refiled medical marijuana bill was introduced in the North Carolina House of Representatives in January 2020. The bill would allow those with certain qualifying conditions to possess cannabis for medicinal use, including cancer patients. Senator Bill Rabon has urged lawmakers to support the medicinal use of marijuana and praised Republican Phil Berger for urging opponents to allow patients the ability to access medical marijuana. Senator Berger also stated that there was insufficient scientific evidence to prove that medical marijuana was beneficial and should be legalized.
The bill sponsors have been working hard to persuade their colleagues in the Senate Judiciary and Senate Leader Phil Berger to accept the legalization arguments. On Tuesday, February 12, Senator Bill Rabon introduced a bill that would legalize marijuana use in North Carolina with strong bipartisan support. The bill is expected to be heard by the House and Senate Judiciary Committee on Tuesday, April 9th in Raleigh. This marks the fourth year in a row that North Carolina has considered legalizing medical marijuana, but this time it appears as though it will pass with much less opposition. In addition to giving support for legalizing medical marijuana use, the proposed state budget includes additional funding for research into the potential benefits of medical marijuana for cancer survivors. If all goes according to plan, North Carolina could approve the bill by late May or early June of this year.
On Tuesday, the House gave a bill that would legalize medical marijuana a procedural vote. Senate Bill 3 is sponsored by the Cannabis Policy Reform Group and would allow doctors to prescribe medicinal cannabis programs to those with cancer, epilepsy, and other chronic illnesses. The measure has been approved by both the House and Senate committees. The bill was blocked by similar legislation twice in the past year before it was finally allowed to move forward. This week’s vote is only one additional procedural vote before it can be debated among senators and passed on to the Governor’s desk for approval. David Turner, Southeast Legislative Manager of the Cannabis Policy Reform Group, believes that lawmakers are “on track” to pass this bill. He added that this could be done as soon as Tuesday or Wednesday with an additional committee hearing on Thursday. Once approved, North Carolina will join 11 other states who have legalized medical marijuana programs under their Compassionate Care Act or similar laws.