Next Medical Marijuana State: Georgia

GAflagmapEntrepreneurs and investors in the medical marijuana (MMJ) space now have a new state to watch, and that state is Georgia. The catch, however, is that while the state is set to legally allow MMJ use among patients, it won’t allow MMJ sales within its borders.

The state’s MMJ measure, House Bill 1, is now up for the signature of Gov. Nathan Deal, after it gained approval of both Georgia Legislature chambers.

But while this bill is considered a step in the right direction for medical cannabis, it leaves the big question of where Georgia patients can actually obtain their cannabis medication.

Prospective cannabis businesses in Florida seem to be the most likely providers. Florida, sitting just south of Georgia, is expected to legalize medical marijuana through legislation this year at the earliest or through the ballot next year.

However, even this scenario presents a hurdle. Currently, the federal government prohibits the transport of marijuana across state lines. According to the Macon Telegraph, patients could be compelled to break federal law by legally purchasing cannabis in another state and then transporting it home.

Aside from patients, people in the legal marijuana business are also left in a lurch by this expected Georgia law.

The situation is also similar to the scenario in “CBD-only” states like Utah.

Under the upcoming Georgia law, patients with certain ailments will be allowed to use a tincture whose primary chemical component is the marijuana substance called CBD. Another marijuana chemical, THC, may be present, but will be limited to less than 5%.

Ailments that will qualify for MMJ in Georgia are cancer, multiple sclerosis, sickle cell anemia, Lou Gehrig’s disease, Crohn’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, mitochondrial disease, and seizure disorders.

The MMJ law will also implement other restrictions. For one, patients may possess a maximum of 20 liquid ounces of the cannabis medicine at a time, and “under strict supervision” by their doctors and the state. Georgia will also continue to prohibit MMJ in smokable form.

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