Lawmakers Say Deal Reached On Medical Marijuana
ST. PAUL (AP) - Minnesota lawmakers have a deal on a medical marijuana bill that would set up eight distribution sites and allow qualified patients to access the drug in oil, pill and vapor form.
The agreement announced Thursday was crafted to suit concerns of Gov. Mark Dayton, who backs it.
State Senator John Pederson of St. Cloud says he's likely to vote "no" on the bill. He says there's no FDA support - regulation /testing that is required for all other medication. And, he says it's still illegal on the Federal level, which means every Federal law enforcement agency in Minnesota will be asked to "look the other way" when enforcing the law.
Meanwhile, State Representative Zach Dorholt of St. Cloud says he strongly supports it.
The compromise bridges differences between a restrictive House bill and a relatively expansive Senate bill. Under the agreement, two manufacturers would be able to grow the drugs and run a total of eight distribution centers.
Leaf or plant form of marijuana wouldn't be accessible. Smoking the drug wouldn't be permitted.
It represents the culmination of a years-long effort by advocates to make the medical use of marijuana legal in Minnesota. Twenty-one other states and the District of Columbia allow medical marijuana.