Medical marijuana measure clears Nebraska legislative panel

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A bill to legalize medical cannabis in Nebraska that would offer a variety of business license opportunities but would ban certain products from the market advanced out of a legislative committee.

Members of the Judiciary Committee voted 5-1 on Friday to send the sales and taxation measure to the full Legislature for debate. Lawmakers could debate the measure as soon as next week.

The proposal faces an uphill battle in the Legislature even though its sponsor, Sen. Anna Wishart, a Democrat from Lincoln, has made concessions to more heavily regulate the program.

For example, the bill would not allow smokable marijuana and would restrict the amount one person can legally possess.

The bill calls for business licenses to be issued by Nov. 1, 2020, in the following manner:

  • Up to 10 growers per congressional district (30 statewide).
  • Up to 10 dispensaries per congressional district (30 statewide).
  • Any qualified processor (no limit).

The amended bill lists 17 qualifying medical conditions, including chronic pain, epilepsy, post-traumatic stress disorder, autism and cancer.

Wishart and activists are working to put a separate MMJ legalization measure on the 2020 ballot with far fewer restrictions.

The measure, a proposed constitutional amendment, would legalize smokable marijuana and allow individuals to grow an “adequate” supply of cannabis.

– Associated Press and Marijuana Business Daily