Mississippi gov issuing ‘unreasonable demands’ on cannabis, lawmakers say

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Republican state lawmakers in Mississippi say that GOP Gov. Tate Reeves has been delaying a special session of the Legislature with “unreasonable demands” on parameters of a bill to legalize a medical cannabis program.

According to Mississippi Today, there’s been an ongoing back-and-forth between Reeves and Republican lawmakers since Sept. 24, when they informed him they were ready to come back for a special session in order to legalize MMJ.

The topic has been a political hot potato since the state Supreme Court in May ruled that a medical marijuana legalization initiative approved by voters last year was illegal because of a technicality

That meant the Legislature would be forced to pass a bill in order to launch a cannabis industry in the state.

Reeves has pledged to honor “the will of the voters” by signing a medical marijuana bill into law.

Reeves told Republican lawmakers in recent weeks he wants a lower limit on MMJ flower “dosage” amounts – down to 2.8 grams from the current proposal of 3.5 grams, which is about one-eighth of an ounce.

But GOP lawmakers refused to make that alteration, state Rep. Lee Yancey told Ridgeland-based Mississippi Today.

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In a counterproposal, Reeves asked that physicians be allowed to approve 3.5-gram doses for MMJ patients but requested that nurses, physician assistants and optometrists be limited to recommending 2.8-gram doses. Yancey said that plan would be unworkable, according to Mississippi Today.

Then, during a recent news conference, Reeves said he was hoping to see lower THC caps for MMJ products written into the bill.

That request caught Yancey and other lawmakers off guard because the bill already contains a potency cap: 30% THC for smokable MMJ flower and 60% THC for concentrates.