House committee passes medical marijuana bill
The bill’s sponsor, State Representative Allen Peake (R-District 141), tells 41NBC House Bill 1 passed the House Judiciary Non-Civil Committee.
The bill legalizes cannabis oil with 5% THC to treat with eight qualifying conditions: seizure disorders, Lou Gehrig’s Disease, cancer, multiple sclerosis, fibromyalgia, Parkinson’s Disease, mitochondrial disease, and Crohn’s Disease. Peake tells 41NBC this vote is a step in the right direction to help half a million Georgians.
“There are a lot of folks who have said this has just been an indication of a slippery slope,” Peake said. “Well, I prefer to say it’s a verification of a compassionate reach by my colleagues and by the House of Representatives.”
Katie Crosby of Macon suffers from fibromyalgia. She sent 41NBC a statement saying,
“I applaud the committee for listening to the people by passing HB 1 with 5%. However, I am saddened for all of the sufferers who were left behind by the diagnoses cut. I do consider today a victory and hope that HB 1 passes quickly and smoothly through the House and Senate.”
Peake says he hopes the bill will progress through both the Rules Committee and the full House this week. The lawmaker expects the Senate will make some changes to the bill, including possibly removing some of the qualifying medical conditions, but he is confident some of it will become law.
The lawmaker says once the bill passes both chambers and is signed into law by the governor, it could take up to 90 days for qualifying patients to get access to the cannabis oil.
Peake tells 41NBC there is a manufacturer who is willing to ship the cannabis oil Charlotte’s Web into Georgia once the bill is passed and signed into law. It is considered hemp since it is so low in THC and can be legally shipped across state lines.
A commission will be created to review the best way to grow and distribute the cannabis oil in state. It will have to give its recommendations to the governor by the end of the year.
Gov. Nathan Deal has said he hopes to sign a bill legalizing cannabis oil.