With only two days remaining before the legislative calendar closes, sponsors of a medical marijuana bill in New York State rushed to make last-minute modifications to it in order to win the backing of Gov. Andrew Cuomo.
The thorny issue, which is the main basis for which Mr. Cuomo refuses to sign the bill, is the provision that allows individuals aged above 21 years to smoke marijuana for clinical reasons.
On Tuesday, Mr. Cuomo was quoted in a radio interview as saying that he won’t sign into law a bill that permits smoking of cannabis, contrary to the position taken by 23 other states, including Washington, reported New York Times.
Cuomo said medical professionals had expressed reservations about the provision, citing the recommendation of Dr. Howard A. Zucker, the state’s acting health Commissioner; and Joseph A. D’Amico, New York’s superintendent of police.
“I understand the politicians and the political process,” Mr. Cuomo, a Democrat, said. “But I understand that this is a very serious matter.”
Under the new negotiated changes, patients will now be allowed up to two ounces of marijuana per month, down from the previous limit of 2.5 ounces that Mr. Cuomo argued against. Some medical conditions such as diabetes, lupus and post-concussion syndrome were eliminated from the list of conditions eligible for treatment using the drug.
This means that only patients with conditions such as multiple sclerosis, HIV/AIDS, cancer, epilepsy, neuropathy, Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, wasting syndrome, rheumatoid arthritis, Crohn’s disease, Huntington’s disease among others will be allowed access to medical marijuana. Any other medical conditions will be included by the state health commissioner rather than a committee of experts as per Mr. Cuomo’s proposal. To register for a free 2-week subscription to ForexMinute Premium Plan, visit www.forexminute.com/newsletter.
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