State looks into legalizing medical marijuana

State lawmakers are looking at bills this week that would allow seriously ill patients to use marijuana. The medical marijuana bill has been the subject of debate before. The Democratically controlled

News 12 Staff

Apr 24, 2009, 12:40 AM

Updated 5,568 days ago

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State lawmakers are looking at bills this week that would allow seriously ill patients to use marijuana.
The medical marijuana bill has been the subject of debate before. The Democratically controlled Assembly has passed a bill several times. Now that there is a Democratic majority in the state Senate, some say it's possible that the bill will pass there for the first time.
Glaucoma patient Miriam Vieni, of Westbury, says she?s one of the many who could be helped by medical marijuana. She has lost some of her vision, but says her doctor says smoking marijuana could keep the tension on her optic nerve down.
?Cancer patients, AIDS patients, epileptics, people with very serious diseases would be eligible [for the drug] with supervision [and] after they are fully registered, have a doctor?s approval,? says bill co-sponsor Assemblyman Tom Alfano (R-Franklin Square).
The bill would contain strict controls to prevent abuse, such as the requirement of a doctor's prescription. Thirteen states have already passed laws legalizing medical marijuana. Gov. David Paterson has not indicated whether he'll sign the bill if it passes.


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