RALEIGH − State Rep. Pricey Harrison was among a group of Democratic legislators to file a medical marijuana bill Wednesday.
House Bill 78 would allow the regulated distribution and medical use of cannibis “to protect patients with debilitating medical conditions, and their physician and caregivers, from arrest and prosecution, criminal and other penalties.”
It’s the sixth session in a row that Harrison, a Guilford County Democrat, has backed similar legislation.
“For me, it’s a medical issue,” Harrison said. “It has an ancillary benefit of raising some revenues.”
Should North Carolina allow the medicinal use of marijuana?
N.C. Democrats filed a bill supporting in the General Assembly this week.
The bill’s sponsors estimated medical marijuana sales could bring $250 million worth of annual revenue to the state.
Twenty-three states and the District of Columbia allow the use of marijuana for medicinal purposes.
Past efforts to persuade the General Assembly to consider the medical marijuana issue have been met with resistance. A similar bill filed last year was swiftly killed.
Harrison doesn't think this new legislation has much of a chance.
“It’s clearly working in other states. I think here it’s more of a Bible Belt resistance,” Harrison said. “People didn’t want to touch it because they perceive it as a ruse or a door for legalizing marijuana outright.”