Texas Senate Moves Foward To Pass New Legislation For Cannabis And Psychedelics
The Senate inside the state of Texas has now approved a bill to lower the penalty of possessing marijuana concentrates. Also, a measure in the bill would permit Texas to examine the therapeutic possibilities of psychedelics like psilocybin and MDMA. Yet due to senators revising each piece of both bills, they must first go back to their originating chamber. Which would need to be done prior to sending it off to the governor.
So, advocates are watching with a close eye in regards to a separate bill that would expand the state’s medical cannabis program. This particular bill has passed the House and was sent to a Senate committee this past week. However, the outcome of that bill remains unsure as a legislative deadline comes closer. Action must be taken in the Senate State Affairs Committee in order to pass this bill to the floor. With this political figures see that the end of the session is soon approaching.
With HB 1802, in place, after it was approved by the Senate on Saturday in a 25-5 victory things will now change. Texas would need to examine the medical dangers and advantages of psilocybin, MDMA. As well as ketamine for military veterans in partnership with Baylor College of Medicine and a military-focused medical center. As revised by a House committee, it would also mandate clinical testing with psilocybin for veterans who suffer from PTSD.
This would be carried out to find a deeper review of the scientific findings on all three substances. The Senate approved a balanced budget revision to the legislation. What this did was clarify that the psychedelic investigations would not be carried out. Except if money was collected to do so in a situation already accounted for by a contingent rider for the funds.
The Next Step For Texas Decriminalizing Cannabis And Psychedelics
Rick Perry who was once the Governor of Texas as well person who once worked as U.S. energy secretary holds great influence. Gov. Rick Perry (has called on state legislators to greenlight the psychedelics legislation.
In comparison to other types of state-level cannabis reform, this concentrates bill is a bit more modest. Especially in the attempt to pass a more broad decriminalization bill that recently passed the House. Yet since then has stalled. However if passed, HB 2593 would mark the first time that Texas has lessened punishments connected with marijuana. The last time Texas passed any cannabis legislation to lower penalties was back in the 1970s.
This piece of cannabis legislation has won the Senate with a passing vote of 24-7 this past week. What this bill would permit is the possession of up to 56 grams of concentrates a class B misdemeanor. This new measure would still hold the threat of jail time. Yet it would be drastically less severe than the felony class some crimes currently hold.
Senators added an alteration before giving the bill its final approval. This was done, to figure out the potency of THC in legal hemp products. This is pretty much done by calculating all forms of tetrahydrocannabinol. This would also alter the market for delta-8-THC products.
“This is concerning since hundreds if not thousands of Texas businesses, who have survived the economic impacts of the pandemic, will be impacted, as well as the many customers who have benefited from these products,” Jax Finkel, executive director of Texas NORML, told Marijuana Moment. “Legality based on the chemical makeup of a plant is expensive, ineffective and a failed policy.”
Final Thoughts On Cannabis Legislation In Texas
It’s not concrete when the House will consider accepting the revisions to the marijuana and psychedelics bills. Even with the session soon to meet its end on May 31. If the body passes the Senate-amended bill, it will go to Gov. Greg Abbott, who has not yet publicly spoken either piece of legislation.
Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick who as the Senate’s supervising officer determines if and when legislation will advance. As well Lt. Gov. Patrick has spoken in opposition of marijuana reform. He has also played a part in stopping and halting both cannabis measures.
The current House-approved medical cannabis expansion measure. yet is was not transferred to a Senate committee until several days after it arrived in the chamber. This hold-up has endangered its possibilities of passing a floor vote by the end of the session.
The bill, HB 1535, would allow those who suffer from medical conditions to access cannabis. For example, the bill would add cancer, chronic pain, and post-traumatic stress disorder as conditions. If someone suffers from these conditions it would qualify people for the state’s limited medical cannabis program.
It would also allow the Department of State Health Services to amend the qualifying conditions through administrative rulemaking. Plus it would also increase the THC limit for medical marijuana products from 0.5 percent to five percent.
The House approved a cannabis decriminalization bill in 2019, but it did not advance in the Senate that session. Patrick declared the measure “dead in the Texas Senate,” stating that he sides with lawmakers “who oppose this step toward legalization of marijuana.”
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