State Lawmakers Battle Over Medical Marijuana Bill

June 13, 2007

, NY1 News

A deal to legalize medical marijuana is in the works in Albany, but both houses of state government are at odds to how to make it a reality. The state Assembly passed a bill yesterday to make medical marijuana available to seriously ill New Yorkers. Participants in the program would be allowed to buy up to two and a half ounces of pot or grow up to a dozen plants.

“This would mean an awful lot to thousands of suffering New Yorkers,” said Manhattan Assemblyman Richard Gottfried. “The current prohibition in keeping them from that medical benefit is just political correctness run amok.”

“I think it's important people, who that is the only thing that gives them relief, should have it available to them,” said Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver.

The state Senate wants to tighten the assembly's bill, to better control distribution of the drug. Some in the Senate have suggested that the State Department of Health grow and distribute the marijuana.

The Senate's version of the bill could be introduced today. The current legislative session ends June 21st.


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