Kansas Gov: Medical Marijuana Legalization on 2020 Legislative Agenda Despite Coronavirus
Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly maintains that passing medical marijuana legislation could still happen this session even though the legislature is currently indefinitely suspended due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Gov. Kelly outlined the possibility in an interview with local news station KSNT when asked about the status of the 2020 legislative session.
“The Legislative Coordinating Committee decided they would not reconvene on April 27th, they will have to come back sometime in the near future though,” Kelly said.
Kelly went on to say that this does not preclude lawmakers from reviewing and debating pending bills, including one to legalize medical cannabis.
“The possibility of medicaid expansion still exists this session as well as legalizing medical marijuana in Kansas,” Kelly said.
What’s more, Gov. Kelly is optimistic that a medical cannabis bill would be approved by lawmakers.
“There’s been some discussion about legalizing medical marijuana. I think that discussion continues and I think if it actually was able to come to a vote, I think that it probably would pass the legislature,” she said.
New York’s hopes for adult-use cannabis legalization this year have been dashed. Gov. Andrew Cuomo has attempted to legalize marijuana for the past two years through his annual budget for the state. But he conceded that New York’s legislative session for this year is “effectively over” and that cannabis reform was too complicated a matter to work through as the state battles against the spread of the coronavirus and the economic harms of the lockdown.
Cannabis reform activists in Missouri, who aimed to put a marijuana legalization question on the state’s November 2020 ballot, have also called time on their signature-drive efforts for this year. They said collecting signatures to qualify for the ballot was all but impossible owing to social distancing guidelines in place to prevent transmission of the virus.