Medical marijuana bill one step closer to legalization in Utah

Posted at 10:09 AM, Feb 26, 2015

SALT LAKE CITY – The bill that would legalize medical marijuana in Utah is one step closer to becoming law.

Senate Bill 259, sponsored by Sen. Mark Madsen, R-Saratoga Springs, passed out of the Senate Judiciary Committee Thursday morning with a 3-2 vote.

It would allow for people with debilitating illnesses (such as AIDS, cancer and other qualifying conditions) to possess and use cannabis — in gummy or liquid form.

The senator said he has been treated for back problems requiring him to see specialists across the United States. The doctors suggested medical cannabis as opposed to prescription opioids.

“I think it’s effective,” Sen. Madsen said Wednesday. “It has effective analgesic properties. I observed a dimmunition in my level of pain.”

Under SB259, dispensaries would be licensed by the state to distribute cannabis products. Sen. Madsen insisted that recreational marijuana would remain illegal in Utah, as would smoking it (even if it were medicinal).

Currently 23 states have laws like this on the books, Utah would be No. 24.

MORE: This bill could legalize medical marijuana in Utah