Kentucky governor OKs cannabis research center, weighs MMJ legalization

Kentucky Democratic Gov. Andy Beshear broadened the scope of a cannabis research center approved by lawmakers while still considering using executive authority to legalize medical marijuana.

House lawmakers passed a restrictive MMJ bill by a resounding 59-34 vote in March, but the measure died in the Senate to Beshear’s frustration.

Lawmakers authorized the cannabis research center at the University of Kentucky in lieu of legalizing medical cannabis, according to the Associated Press.

Beshear on Tuesday approved the measure authorizing the cannabis research center.

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But he used his line-item veto authority to strike down provisions in the bill he said would limit the facility’s activities and access to state funding, the AP reported.

The governor separately has instructed his legal staff to determine whether he can legalize medical marijuana through executive action.