By Patrick McCreless, Anniston Star
A local lawmaker is moving forward with his bill that would make marijuana use legal for medicinal purposes, expecting to pre-file the legislation within another week.
Rep. K.L. Brown, R-Jacksonville, said Wednesday he had submitted the bill Monday to the state’s Legislative Reference Service. Lawmakers submit their legislation to that department before filing it with the Legislature for consideration.
"What they do is put it in the proper legal jargon," Brown said. "They put it in bill form — that is what happens right before it is filed."
Brown said it should take about a week before he gets the revised bill back from the Legislative Reference Service.
"Hopefully I'll have it in a week and get it filed," he said.
Sixteen states allow doctors to prescribe marijuana for certain medicinal purposes.
Brown's sister used medicinal marijuana to control her pain before she died of breast cancer 25 years ago, and he sees the measure as a way to help many suffering Alabamians in a similar manner.
However, he has emphasized that the bill was in no way part of a larger effort to decriminalize marijuana completely in the state.
"This is not a recreational marijuana legalizing bill at all," Brown said previously.
"It's strictly for medicinal purposes and will be closely monitored by the Health Department and law enforcement."