JEFFERSON CITY — A medical marijuana bill hit a brick wall in the legislature Wednesday when a committee killed it.
While the bill’s sponsor believes there’s still a chance for the legislation, some medical marijuana advocates say the outcome was inevitable.
HB 1554, sponsored by Rep. Jim Neely, R-Cameron, would provide access to medical marijuana for people who suffer from terminal illnesses; however, it failed to make it out of the Legislative Oversight Committee on Wednesday.
Last year Neely sponsored House Bill 437, which would have legalized access to medical marijuana for people suffering from “epilepsy or an irreversible debilitating disease or conditions.” It failed to gain traction after being approved by a committee.
Jack Cardetti, spokesman for New Approach Missouri said, “New Approach Missouri has never been focused on getting the bill through the legislature, because quite frankly we think it is a gigantic waste of time.
“The only way that Missouri will become the 30th state to allow medical marijuana is through the ballot box,” he said, “and that is New Approach Missouri’s sole focus.”
Neely, who was not at Wednesday’s hearing, believes the committee may take another look. “I wouldn’t be surprised if they don’t bring it back up and take another look at it, because I think there were some members missing,” he said.
If the committee does not end up taking another look at the bill, Neely plan to file the bill a third time, as maybe the “third time is a charm.”