The Tennessee Medical Cannabis Act aims to regulate medical cannabis within its boundaries.
Fox 17 reports that Senator Janice Bowling (R-Tullahoma) and Representative Iris Rudder (R-Winchester) proposed the bill. This bill would serve as the basis for a system that would allow licensing for medical cannabis providers and allow cannabis to be grown, transported and sold to pharmacies.
The bill contains the requirements for patients interested in medicinal cannabis. This list includes cancer, epilepsy, HIV / AIDS, Crohn’s disease, glaucoma, opioid addiction, kidney failure, muscular sclerosis, persistent muscle spasm, severe nausea or chronic pain, ALS, Parkinson’s disease, severe psoriasis, and end-of-life pain management.
The Tennessean reported that 81 percent of Tennessee voters support patients and doctors in deciding whether medicinal cannabis is an effective treatment. Despite these staggering numbers, Tennessee remains one of the 19 states that punish simple cannabis possession with prison terms.
Senator Bowling told other parishioners that she supported the bill. “We shouldn’t make criminals out of people who need help with their health care and want to be addicted to opioids,” said Senator Bowling, explaining her belief that the COVID-19 pandemic is evidence that cannabis is a safer alternative as opioids for therapeutic use and should be legal.
Senate government operations have recommended the bill for passage, and it is now being referred to the Senate Judiciary Committee. However, the Senate Judiciary Committee was recently killed Senate Act 0153, a bill that would have allowed THC levels in government urine tests before legal CBD and hemp products were phased out.
Marijuana moment reports that cannabis products would have a sales tax of nine percent through this legalization law. Additionally, local jurisdictions would be allowed to add up to 2.1 percent of this tax through the bill. The proceeds would be used for community and economic development grants, law enforcement training on methamphetamine and opioids, and running the program.
Another bill provides for the creation of a commission to investigate medical cannabis. However, this would only take effect if Congress rescheduled marijuana from its controlled substances list. The measure is also delegated to the Senate Judiciary Committee, but the Senate government’s operations have not recommended it for passage.
As Tennessee continues to make strides, hope remains that doctors will be able to offer cannabis as a treatment option and that patients will have safe access to their medication.