Medical marijuana expansion effort edges ahead in House

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) – A year after lawmakers created the framework for a medical marijuana program in Louisiana, medicinal-grade pot hasn’t reached the hands of a single patient amid regulatory hurdles built into the law.

A new effort in the Legislature aims to jumpstart the growth and dispensing of medical marijuana and to expand the program’s reach.

The bill has won support from the Louisiana Senate and began advancing Tuesday in the state House, with an 8-6 vote of the House health committee.

The proposal by Republican Sen. Fred Mills would add more diseases to the list of those that could be treated with medical marijuana. It also would set a Sept. 1 deadline for LSU and Southern University to decide if they want to be the state-sanctioned grower.

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