ATLANTA, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) -- House Bill 885, State Representative Allen Peake's medical marijuana legislation, sailed through another key vote without any opposition, but now it has a new component.
Wednesday evening, the Senate Health and Human Services Committee voted to pass the bill through unamiously.
Peake tells 41NBC "protection from prosecution" was added to the bill. He says that means if families go out to Colorado to get the canabis oil form of medical marijuana, and take the risk of bringing it back to Georgia, they can use the drug here without fear of being arrested for it, as long as they've got a prescription for it.
Peake said this new addition to the bill tackles the hurdle of how Georgians suffereing from seizure disorders were going to get access to the drug.
H.B. 885 allows for academic medical research centers to grow the medicine, but that would put them at for losing federal funding. Peake said that part is still in the bill in case federal law regarding medicinal marijuana changes in the future.
The senate committee also voted to support HB 885 in conjunction with a senate bill that calls for more autism insurance coverage. They're calling the combined legislation Kids Care Act.
Peake called the senate committee's vote another big win for the cause.
"That's why I serve in the legislature to somehow do a good enough job for the people of this district, that we can pass some legislation that really does have a postive impact on their lives, rather than the opposite of government being a burden on their lives... If we can do something for these families, it's worth every blood, sweat, and tear of being an elected official," said Peake.
The bill now goes on to the senate rules committee tomorrow. It will likely be on the senate floor for a vote on Tuesday, day 39 of the 40 day session.