The Georgia State Senate approved a bill earlier today that would downsize the state’s current medical cannabis law. Cannabis advocates who call Georgia home had warned that this move will cause many families, as well as their children, to suffer.
The bill, SB-16, which passed in the Georgia State Senate with 41-12 votes, adds autism to the list of qualifying conditions for cannabis oil use, but it also reduces the maximum THC level from five percent to three. This change is an attempt to match the regulations of other states with similar programs, as well as limited use restrictions. According to AJC.com, the dozens of states that have medical cannabis programs only allow patients to use cannabis oil with one percent or less of THC.
The bill’s sponsor, Sen. Ben Watson, also added a call for the federal government to reclassify cannabis from its current status as a Schedule 1 substance. “To say cannabidiol has no medicinal value is just not true,” Watson said.
The state’s current 2015 law, allows families who register with the state to possess up to 20 ounces of cannabis oil to treat conditions such as cancer, Parkinson’s disease and epilepsy. The bill has now been moved to the Georgia State House for further consideration. However, the House is currently busy discussing the effectiveness of two other bills, HB-65 and House Resolution 36 that would actually expand the law. HB-65 aims to “change provisions relating to conditions and eligibility; to provide a definition; to remove certain reporting requirements; to provide for related matters; to repeal conflicting laws; and for other purposes.” The aforementioned resolution proposes an amendment to the constitution “to provide by law for the regulation of the production of cannabis and sale of medical cannabis to certain individuals for medical usage as provided by law.”