Kanawha delegate proposes medical marijuana law changes

Kanawha delegate proposes medical marijuana law changes

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Delegate Ron Walters, R- Kanawha, suggested on Wednesday that members of the West Virginia Medical Cannabis Advisory Board recommend personal growth of marijuana plants remain prohibited, but consider allowing "the sale of buds." During a board meeting at the University of Charleston, Walters also asked the board members to allow medical marijuana dispensaries to also grow and process the drug. Walters was among about seven lawmakers who recently traveled to Colorado to learn more about the marijuana industry. West Virginia passed its own medical marijuana law during the 2017 legislative session. The law allows doctors to recommend medical marijuana to patients, and gives the Department of Health and Human Resources’ Bureau for Public Health regulatory oversight. The West Virginia Medical Cannabis Advisory Board, which can recommend changes to the law to the Legislature, met for the second time Wednesday. "I’m going to applaud you but I’m going to caution you about the problems in our bill," Walters said, "and if you can correct it through rule-making, please. That’s the easiest way to do it." The board also suggests rules, meaning the specific plans for implementing laws the Legislature passes, to the Bureau for Public Health. Walters also said that "one of the things Colorado did was they seen their black market drop by 95 percent when they legalized recreational." "Before that, they saw a substantial drop in their black market by limiting the number of growers — not allowing people to grow in their homes — and the key element is being able to sell buds to make the oil to do the treatment," Walters said. "Our law does not allow the sale of the buds so we’re going to do the opposite of what I think we want to do and that was start to kill the black […]

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