A proposed measure that would have made medical marijuana dispensaries legal in Michigan got smoked early Friday, when Senate wrapped up the 2013-14 session without taking any action on the measure.
The lower chamber of the Legislature had approved the legislation (House Bill 4271) around year ago, but it failed to advance as the Senate didn’t pay any heed to it.
A companion measure that would have allowed patients to use non-smokable forms of the medical marijuana, including medibles, also failed to attract the Senate’s attention.
State Rep. Mike Callton, a Republican from Nashville, said he himself had asked Senate Majority Leader Randy Richardville to withdraw his medical marijuana dispensary legislation from the agenda after it became clear that it would not get votes.
Speaking on the topic, Callton said, “It wasn’t going to have the votes. It was really looking good this morning. I was all excited. And then the Sheriff’s Association had all their sheriffs call all their senators, and suddenly we lost a lot of votes.”
Earlier this week, the Michigan Legislature approved two other bills that would legalize industrial hemp research in the state. The federal government treats hemp as an illegal drug since 1970 because of its similarity to marijuana, but the federal Farm Bill ratified earlier this year included an amendment allowing state to do industrial hemp research.
While supporters of medical marijuana bills say that such legislations are essential to improve access for patients certified to use the drug for medical purposes; critics have repeatedly mounted a late push to bury such bills, citing concerns over the potential widespread use of the drug, especially by children.
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