MONTGOMERY, AL — A bill to allow cannabidiol, or CBD, medications derived from marijuana should be introduced soon to the Alabama legislature, with support from Republicans in both the House and Senate.
Authored by state Rep. Mike Ball, R-Madison, the bill is aimed at allowing parents of children with certain neurological and epileptic disorders to possess CBD -based medical marijuana.
“You can’t get high on it, and it has no street value,” Ball, a former state trooper, told the Huntsville Times last week. “Once the public understands what this is – and we’re making progress on that – I think we’ll be in pretty good shape.”
Democratic state Rep. Patricia Todd of Birmingham, who has unsuccessfully introduced medical marijuana legalization bills to the legislature in the past, is expected to co-sponsor the legislation.
The bill, which has not yet been formally introduced, has been named “Carly’s Law” after a young girl who suffers from a rare genetic seizure disorder. Carly’s father is a police officer who has been advocating for the legalization of CBD-based medicine derived from marijuana.
Republican Senator Paul Sanford has offered to sponsor the bill in the Senate.
“If my child was having 300 seizures a month and there was something I could give them that would cut it down to four, by golly, this gentleman would be making sure I got it,” Sen. Sanford told the Huntsville Times following a forum Tuesday night. “And I’ll be frank: If it meant I had to break the law, I would break the law so I wouldn’t have to watch my infant child go through something like that.”
“If that makes me a bad person, so be it. I think it would make me a great parent, to be honest.”
Sanford added that he is willing to do whatever it takes to pass the CBD medical marijuana bill, even if it costs him re-election, but at the same time he emphasized that he is not seeking full legalization of medical marijuana.
“I’m not asking for the legalization of marijuana, whether medically or recreationally,” Dalton told lawmakers. “What I’m asking you to consider is that CBD oil as a marijuana derivative should be considered much in the same way we use morphine, which is derived from opium.”
While stopping short of legalizing medical marijuana for most potential patients, CBD-focused medical marijuana laws allow children suffering from rare disorders to have immediate access to helpful medicine, without the intoxicating side effects, while lawmakers continue to work towards implementing more effective medical marijuana bills.
Rep. Todd says the proposed CBD – bill is so narrowly focused that she hopes other lawmakers will finally support it. However, she said any medical marijuana initiative remains an “uphill battle” in the state Legislature.
Meanwhile, Rep. Todd is expected to continue to introduce comprehensive bills to allow medical marijuana for all of the state’s patients, as well as bills to legalize and regulate marijuana sales by adults.
Alabama’s 2014 legislative session begins January 14.
Published Here: The Daily Chronic