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Will Alabama allow medical marijuana? Hearing, vote likely Wednesday

A medical marijuana bill is headed to its first vote in the Alabama Legislature as advocates hope to gain legislative traction after years of setbacks in Montgomery.

The Senate Judiciary Committee will hold a public hearing on the legislation Wednesday and could vote the same day. The bill by Republican Sen. Tim Melson would allow people to be prescribed medical marijuana for certain conditions, including cancer, anxiety and chronic pain, and to purchase cannabis products at a dispensary licensed by the Alabama Medical Cannabis Commission.

Medical marijuana advocates for years made little headway in Montgomery. A medical marijuana bill in 2013 won the so-called “Shroud Award” for the “deadest” bill that year in the House of Representatives. A bill cleared the Alabama Senate last year but the measure faces continued skepticism in the House of Representatives and opposition from Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall.

“The committee’s my hurdle right now. I can’t look at the end of the track until I cross the next one,” Melson said when asked about the bill’s outlook. [Read more at AL.com]

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