Louisiana Lawmakers Discuss Expanding Medical Marijuana Program
Louisiana lawmakers are talking about possible legislation to expand the state's medical marijuana program that would bring new taxes on the therapeutic products.
Houma Rep. Tanner Magee (R) is proposing the state allow the sale of raw smokable marijuana in the medical marijuana program. He also wants a new tax on the products if state leaders approve it. Magee is the second-ranking Republican in the state's House of Representatives, so his proposal carries weight.
The House Ways and Means Committee agreed with Magee and said the proposed tax would go to transportation projects around the state. There are some objections from lawmakers who see cannabis as true medicine and reject the idea of taxing medicine. Currently, prescription drugs in Louisiana aren't taxed.
The proposed bill for smokable cannabis being to added to the medical marijuana program has been advanced to the House for a full debate. However, there hasn't been a date set for the hearing.
Financial professionals are saying the proposed bill could bring Louisiana more than $12 million in tax money a year to help fund the deep backlog of road and bridge work the state wants to start work on.
Magee says this proposal is very popular with the voters in Louisiana as a way to treat chronic conditions and pain.