Are a Whole Bunch of College Kids About to Develop Rheumatoid Arthritis?

New York Legislature makes definite steps toward medical marijuana

A+medically-licensed+growing+facility+in+New+Jersey.

Courtesy MCT Campus Service

A medically-licensed growing facility in New Jersey.

Supporters of legalizing medical marijuana in New York were flying high after the measure cleared the senate health committee for the first time Wednesday afternoon (5/21). The bill, sponsored by Sen. Diane Savino ( D-Staten Island) was reported out of committee by a 9-8 vote. All who voted against the measure were Republicans–figures huh?

It now goes to the Senate Finance Committee, and if it passes there, it could be brought to the floor for a full vote of the Senate before the legislative session ends next month. The legislation would authorize the use of Medical Pot to treat specific “serious, debilitating, life threatening” chronic illnesses.  Savino recently amended the bill to allow use for rheumatoid arthritis, but at the urging of the State’s ophthalmologists it would not cover glaucoma.

The bill however lists 20 different diseases for which medical marijuana can prescribed. It would also create an advisory panel to consider expanding or reducing the list in the future based on science and recommendations. The legislation would also require that every pot plant have a barcode that Savino said would make it “impossible to divert this into the black market.”

Sen. Martin Golden (R-Brooklyn) a former NYC cop, voted against the measure. Golden said he believes eventually medical marijuana will be legalized in New York and nationally, but believes the federal government should lead the way and enact regulations that all states must follow, in order to eliminate the legal confusion that has resulted in other states, as the sale, distribution, and possession of marijuana remain illegal at the federal level.