Senate committee passes revised medical marijuana bill

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ATLANTA, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) – A powerful Senate committee passed a revised version of House Bill 1 that would combine two pieces of medical marijuana legislation with the hope of bringing Georgians home.

State Rep. Allen Peake brought HB 1 before the Senate Health and Human Services committee Thursday. The lawmaker says the proposed substitute bill for HB 1 is very similar to a substitute bill he prepared for Senate Bill 185.

The revised  bill legalizes cannabis oil with a maximum 5% THC level, the psychoactive part of the plant. It requires the CBD level of the oil, the medicinal property of the plant, to be equal to or greater than the THC level. The bill also legalizes the cannabis oil for children and adults.

The bill will allow the use of cannabis oil for several medical conditions, including cancer, seizure disorders, Chron’s disease, sickle cell anemia and more. The Senate committee removed Fibromyalgia from the list of medical conditions that would be covered under the bill.

Lindsey Crosby’s daughter, Katie, suffers from Fibromyalgia. The Maconite says his daughter tried cannabis oil in Colorado and it relieved her chronic pain. He’s upset lawmakers are preventing his daughter from getting access to life saving medicine.

"We cannot afford to move out there [Colorado], so it leaves her hopeless. And when you lose hope, the future looks very bleak," Crosby said.

Peake says he is disappointed Fibromyalgia didn’t make the cut, but he believes this revised bill is one step closer to bringing Georgians who left the state seeking treatment back home.

"We got almost everything that else that we were looking for, eight diagnoses, THC level where we needed it, immunity language, and a support of the clinical trial process that Governor Deal has started, so again I think we are almost there," Peake said. "I’d like to say, until I see a final version of the bill in print, we may have a bill done. I hope so."

The measure now goes to the full Senate for a vote. Peake believes that may happen early next week. It will then head back to the House of Representatives for final approval before going to the Governor’s desk. Peake hopes this version of the bill will be signed into law by Governor Nathan Deal.