NASHVILLE, Tenn.--Two Tennessee Republicans are calling for the creation of a medical cannabis commission to examine what steps the state should take if marijuana is removed from the Schedule I drug list under federal law.
SB118/HB490 is sponsored by Senator Ferrell Haile (R-Gallatin) and Representative Bryan Terry (R-Murfreesboro). Under the bill, a 9 person commission would be created representing each of the state's three grand divisions along with a physician and a pharmacist. Members will also be experts in health care, mental health, business, management, agriculture, or law enforcement.
Expected to hold their first meeting on October 1, 2021, the commission will " examine federal laws, the effectiveness of other states' laws and legislation, and laws and legislation in this state relating to the medical use of cannabis."
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Specifically, the committee will examine patient qualification, patient registration, how health professionals prescribe medical cannabis, how pharmacists dispense medical cannabis, testing of medical cannabis for safety, creating guidelines, and the licensing and regulation of facilities and medical cannabis suppliers. In addition, the committee will examine taxes and fees on cannabis along with current criminal laws on marijuana.
In December of last year, the House of Representatives approved a bill decriminalizing marijuana. The Senate has yet to take up the bill though supporters hope the Biden administration and a split Senate could help usher it into law.
The Tennessee bill will be in the Senate Government Operations Committee on Wednesday.
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