A bill can be killed in various ways especially ones dealing with legalizing marijuana for example obstruction, feet dragging, amendments, procedural snags or getting talked to death in a filibuster, just to give a few. In the case of Texas’ medical marijuana and decriminalization bills, even though each bill had enough support to pass, they never even came up for a vote before time ran out last Thursday night at midnight.
What Happened To The Bills On Marijuana Reform
A midnight deadline passed without the full House even taking up proposed House Bill 81 for consideration on marijuana reform. The bill would have essentially decriminalized the possession of small quantities of marijuana, lessening penalties to below that of most traffic tickets.
House Bill 2017, which would have legalized medical marijuana, met the same fate due to the House’s jam-packed calendar.
So now, both bills are dead in the water as stand-alone legislation.
However, the fact that they got as far as they did is historic for the marijuana industry in the state of texas and marijuana culture. Having made it out of committee, these two bills advanced further than any other high-profile marijuana-related bill in Texas by simply making it on to the calendar in the full House of Representatives.
State Reps. Joe Moody and Jason Isaac, lead sponsors of HB 81, had warned earlier in the week that it was unlikely the House would get to the decriminalization bill by the midnight deadline.
The legislators said they planned to look for ways in the final two weeks of the legislative session to resurrect it, such as by tacking it on as an amendment to another bill.
We can only hope the do because the next opportunity to pass this any type of bill dealing marijuana legislation won’t be until 2019—when the Texas legislature meets again.
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