Heading to gov’s desk: No debate to speed up Louisiana medical marijuana bill

Louisiana won final legislative passage Monday, spurred by personal stories of people with seizures and severe pain that bill advocates say would be eased with medicinal-grade pot.

Lawmakers created a framework for the Louisiana medical marijuana program last year, but regulatory hurdles built into the law have slowed its start.

The bill by Republican Sen. Fred Mills, a St. Martin Parish pharmacist, will broaden the program to cover more diseases and make regulatory changes aimed at getting marijuana — in an oil form that can’t be smoked — into patients’ hands more quickly.

Senators agreed to House changes made to Mills’ bill with a 22-14 vote and no debate. The measure heads next to Gov. John Bel Edwards, who has said he will sign it into law.

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