Mississippi’s Senate Public Health and Welfare Committee approved Senate Bill 2095, a medical marijuana legalization proposal, yesterday and is heading to debate within the state Senate.
The Mississippi Medical Cannabis Act proposes legalizing medical cannabis consumption by patients with severe medical conditions. The bill will allow registered patients to purchase and keep up to 3.5 grams of medical marijuana, according to a report by Cannabis Business Times.
Sen. Kevin Blackwell, R-Southaven, was the lead negotiator of the bill and outlined various sections of the proposal in a presentation to the Senate committee members yesterday at the Mississippi State Capitol in Jackson, Mississippi.
Besides outlining the allowable amount of medical marijuana a person can keep, the bill will also establish a process for obtaining a medical marijuana card and provide licensing for cannabis research facilities and other businesses by the state’s Department of Health.
Even though the bill has not passed, a group of researchers from the University of Mississippi received a federal grant to fund a study on cannabis pain relief for HIV-positive people.
The bill will also limit the percentage of THC allowed in cannabis flowers to 30%.
Under the bill, banks will “not be held liable for providing financial services to a medical cannabis establishment.”
The state of Mississippi has attempted to legalize medical cannabis before. Mississippi residents voted in favor of Initiative 65, another medical cannabis legalization proposal, back in November 2020.
In May 2021, the state’s Supreme Court overturned the measure and ruled it unconstitutional because of an outdated signature-gathering technicality. Since then, Mississippi legislators have drafted a new proposal for medical marijuana legalization.
Although the Senate is set to debate over the medical marijuana bill, Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves voiced his concern over the amount of medical marijuana a person can carry.
To help provide more insight into what a reasonable amount of marijuana looks like, Blackwell brought 3.5 grams of hemp to a meeting with the governor.
As legislators debate over the bill, cannabis advocacy groups will be monitoring it closely. Mississippians wait eagerly over the prospect of purchasing containers of medicinal cannabis in prescription bags.