Alabama’s legislator Rep. K.L. Brown (R-Jacksonville) is moving forward with his bill that would legalize marijuana for medical purposes. Last week, Brown said he had submitted the bill to the state’s Legislative Reference Service and he expects to pre-file the legislation within a week. Lawmakers submit their legislation to that department before filing it in the Legislature. Brown said it should be about a week before he gets the revised bill back from the Legislative Reference Service. “Hopefully I’ll have it in a week and get it filed,” he said. Brown’s sister used cannabis medicinally to control her pain and nausea before she died of breast cancer 25 years ago, and the lawmaker said he sees the measure as a way to help many Alabamians who are in similar situations.
Rep. Brown emphasized that his bill is in no way part of an effort to legalize marijuana completely in Alabama. “This is not a recreational marijuana legalizing bill at all,” Brown said. “It’s strictly for medicinal purposes and will be closely monitored by the Health Department and law enforcement.” Brown’s legislation was compiled earlier this year by the Alabama Medical Marijuana Coalition (AMMJC), which formed in June with the goal of legalizing medical marijuana in the state. The proposed legislation lists the medical conditions that can be legally treated with marijuana and provides for the establishment of licensed medical marijuana distribution centers. People with medicinal cannabis authorizations would carry ID cards issued by the Alabama Department of Health.