Lawmakers across Virginia are filing bills to legalize medical marijuana. One bill has been stalled, but the conversation is expected to be continued in the near future. The General Assembly has been stalling progress.
Supporters and activists are pushing for marijuana reform, according to WDBJ 7 News. Expansion of the medical marijuana program is wanted, but lawmakers are having difficulties advancing bills through the state’s legislative process. An expansion bill recently died in the House of Delegates subcommittee.
Jenn Michelle Pedini of Virginia NORML said, “This is certainly a watershed year for marijuana policy reform in Virginia. What we will see is the birth of the regulated marijuana industry in the commonwealth.”
Pedini also said, “To the general public these may look like baby steps but for those working on policy, these are huge steps forward.”
A Republican lawmaker has requested a study of decriminalization. This is a big step forward for Virginia. The results could help opposing lawmakers see the benefits of regulated legal marijuana.
Pedini said, “Having the Senate Majority Leader side with this issue has been fantastic. We’ve seen Lieutenant Governor Northam make very clear his position to support a full medical marijuana program and the decriminalization of marijuana. And of course this has now been thrust front and center into the Governor’s race.”
Several Gubernatorial candidates in Virginia support decriminalization and/or full medical marijuana programs.