Texas medical marijuana faces a steep uphill climb to implementation

Texas medical marijuana faces a steep uphill climb to implementation

Published on 2/3/17

With Texas being a historically conservative state, it's no surprise that marijuana law reform has taken a back seat to most issues, however advocates are proud of any progress being made towards medical marijuana's truly compassionate cause. In 2015 Texas Gov. Greg Abbott signed into law the state's first medical marijuana bill, a very strict low-THC only program that allows patients with epilepsy, often children, to use the drug after being approved through two qualified doctors. The legislation was originally written to allow 12 grow facilities in Texas with licenses costing $6,000 each, but legislators have decided to weigh down the bill by skyrocketing the license price up to $1.3 million and instead only issue 3 marijuana licenses. Luckily advocates have made a slight compromise by bringing the license price down to nearly $500,000, but the final numbers are still up for discussion for the last regulation meeting on Feb. 22. On Feb. 23 the Department of Public safety will begin accepting marijuana dispensing applications.

“They removed a trooper presence,” she said, “but they replaced it with some kind of an inspector. I wasn’t really sure what the purpose of the inspector is supposed to be. They’re supposed to have more than one inspection per week. What are they looking for? Week to week somebody isn’t going to be growing THC weed. I don’t get it.”

“I think we have a shot,” she said. “I think it’s a long shot, but we do have a shot. There is very guarded optimism. When we set out to get 339 (the CUA) passed, most of the people said ‘don’t get your hopes up.’ Everybody was really shocked when it happened, and I think it happened because people like me — conservative Christian moms — flooded the building with our kids. We’re not hippies! Nobody is trying to get high. We’re trying to help our children.”

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