Alabama Senate Passes Medical Cannabis Legislation
Lulla | Adobe Stock

Alabama Senate Passes Medical Cannabis Legislation

The bill, which would legalize and regulate medical cannabis in the state, now heads to the House for consideration.

Subscribe
March 13, 2020

The Alabama Senate approved legislation March 12 that would legalize and regulate medical cannabis in the state, according to an AL.com report.

Sen. Tim Melson introduced the bill, S.B. 165, last month to establish a regulatory framework for the cultivation, production, testing and sale of medical cannabis in Alabama.

The legislation would create the Alabama Medical Cannabis Commission, which would be charged with licensing cannabis businesses, as well as creating and maintaining a patient registry and issuing medical cannabis ID cards to qualified patients, AL.com reported.

The legislation would allow doctors who receive training to recommend medical cannabis to patients with several qualifying conditions, according to the news outlet, including: anxiety or panic disorder; nausea, weight loss or pain related to cancer; Crohn’s disease; epilepsy or other conditions causing seizures; fibromyalgia; nausea or weight loss related to HIV; persistent nausea; post-traumatic stress disorder; sleep disorders; spasticity associated with a motor neuron disease, multiple sclerosis or spinal cord injury; Tourette’s Syndrome; conditions that cause chronic or intractable pain; and terminal illnesses in which a patient’s life expectancy is six months or less.

The Senate approved an amendment by Sen. Vivian Davis Figures that added menopause and premenstrual syndrome to the list of qualifying conditions, according to AL.com.

The bill allows patients to access cannabis tablets, capsules, tinctures, gelatinous cubes, gels, oils, creams, suppositories, patches and liquid or gel that can be used with an inhaler, the news outlet reported, but would prohibit the use of edibles, whole flower and any smokable product.

Sen. Arthur Orr attempted to make several amendments to the legislation, AL.com reported, although the Senate rejected all his amendments except one, which caps the amount of THC in medical cannabis products for minors.

The Senate’s 22-11 vote sends the bill to the Alabama House for consideration, according to the news outlet.

Melson sponsored a medical cannabis legalization bill last year, as well; although the Senate approved the legislation, it ultimately stalled in the House, where lawmakers transformed the bill into a proposal to create a commission to develop legislation and regulations for a medical cannabis market.