On Sunday, April 17, hundreds of activists, patients, parents and politicians packed the Main Rotunda in the Capitol Building to watch as Pennsylvania became the 24th state with a medicinal cannabis law.
"I am proud to sign this bill that will provide long overdue medical relief to patients and families who could benefit from this treatment. I applaud members of both parties in the House and Senate who have come together to help patients who have run out of medical options and want to thank the thousands of advocates who have fought tirelessly for this cause," said Governor Wolf. "Since taking office, I have met with patients and families, held roundtables, and urged action on this legislation and it is encouraging that the hard work of these families has resulted in truly historic legislation."
Senate Bill 3 is the result of a true bi-partisan effort led by Senators Mike Folmer, (R- Lebanon) and Daylin Leach (D-Montgomery). The result was a bill that passed the Senate 40 - 7 and the House 149 - 46. They forged a coalition that beat back efforts to make the bill CBD only, to have a 10% THC cap, to create a "pilot" program in Pittsburgh and Philadelphia as well as a "sunset" provision.
Critics are quick to point out the high "buy in" costs for anyone seeking one of the limited grow or dispensary licenses. Others decry the prohibition on "smoking" cannabis and the fact that a licensed dispensary will have to seek Board approval to dispense actual flowers after 2 years.
"We are incredibly proud to have worked with a broad coalition of activists and patients from across the Commonwealth. We will need to continue to work together to insure that this program puts patients first by providing high quality medicinal cannabis products at a price that patients can afford" said Patrick K. Nightingale, Esq., Executive Director.
Source: Philly NORML press release