Legislation & Law

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A bill legalizing the use of medical marijuana was recently put before the House in Pennsylvania, and it just passed.

Though it has not, technically, been signed into law yet, Governor Tom Wolf is expected to sign it soon. It will make Pennsylvania the 24th state that will allow patients who qualify to use medical marijuana.

Strong Support

The bill got strong support from lawmakers, and it went through the state Senate on Tuesday, April 12. They voted in overwhelming fashion, with 42 voting for it and only seven against. That put it before the House the next day, and they voted in favor by a tally of 149-46.

This support swelled recently, as changes to the bill have been made over the last year. When it was first presented, many did not like the way it addressed regulating medical marijuana and the entire program. More provisions were needed, and the amendments addressed this regulatory issue specifically. In the last 12 months, lawmakers have been coming around to it, and these votes are the culmination of the process.

Wolf's Statement

Governor Wolf has made a statement regarding the bill, showing how much he also supports it. He called it long overdue, suggesting that he knows many other states have had these laws in place for years. He also thanked lawmakers in both bodies -— the Senate and the House -— for the way they worked together to help families and patients who needed treatment. He said that he'd been in favor of the law since he was elected and that he spent a lot of time meeting both with other politicians and potential patients to find out exactly what he could do to make this a reality.

Legal Marijuana Use

The use of marijuana is still going to be strictly regulated. Patients must have approved conditions, and follow the proper channels to get marijuana. They must use it as prescribed by doctors. It's important for residents to know exactly what this process will look like and what new legal rights they have so that they can use marijuana in accordance with the law.