Maryland House Votes to Pass #$%$ Law...Yahoo! Contributor Network – 9 hrs ago
On Monday, the Associated Press reported that the Maryland House of Delegates had overwhelmingly voted in favor a pathway towards #$%$.
Last week, the Maryland Senate voted to decriminalize small amounts of marijuana possession, according to the Washington Post.
Here's more information on the legislation and the prospects for the measure.
* Lawmakers in the House passed the vote by 108-28. The Senate will vote next on the measure.
* The legislation will create a state commission to manage #$%$ programs at participating academic medical research centers.
* The commission will be independent but function within the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DHMH). Twelve members will be chosen, including three physicians, a nurse, a pharmacist, a scientist, a #$%$ patient, the secretary of the DHMH or their designee, and several legal experts, according to the Marijuana Policy Project.
* Current estimates project the first possible program will be functional around fiscal year 2016 at the earliest.
* The Associated Press reported earlier in March that Joshua Sharfstein, Maryland's health secretary, supported the legal measure.
* The Gov. Martin O'Malley administration had previously opposed this bill due to concerns about the potential prosecution of state employees by federal authorities.
* Dan Riffle, deputy director of government relations for the Marijuana Policy Project, said that "It may take several years for a program to get up and running, and federal policy presents a substantial obstacle to a law like this one ever being fully implemented," according to a press release from the Marijuana Policy Project. "Still, this bill gives us hope that patients could have safe, reliable access through programs that bear the imprimatur of some of the country's most respected medical institutions."