Justice to veto legislation eliminating greyhound racing

Gov. Jim Justice proposed a major roads program using bonds to restore infrastructure and put thousands of West Virginians to work. Patients with specifically listed qualifying medical conditions will be allowed to use extracts, tinctures, and other preparations of marijuana, but not marijuana in flower or leaf form.

Marijuana legalization bills have been introduced in the House for the past several years, but House Speaker Tim Armstead, R-Kanawha, has been both morally opposed to the legislation and afraid the federal government would crack down on states that have legalized the drug. The House agreed to changes the Senate made to the broadband bill that includes possible loans.

Sen. John Unger, a Martinsburg Democrat, read part of the letter during Wednesday's debate on the Senate floor. The House did agree with Senate changes that gives the state Higher Education Policy Commission a role in the changes.

The Senate later Saturday voted 22-12 to pass a revised budget bill that had deeper cuts than that.

The bill would require the state to license marijuana growers, processors and dispensaries, all of which would pay hefty licensing fees. Twenty-eight states, the District of Columbia, and the US territories of Guam and Puerto Rico have enacted effective medical marijuana laws, and 18 states have adopted medical marijuana laws that are ineffective because they are either unworkable or exceptionally restrictive. The House amendment was removed by the Senate, however.

The West Virginia House has followed the Senate and voted to end any doctor's ability to waive the legal requirement to notify parents of an underage daughter's abortion. Unlike an earlier version, the latest bill doesn't specify establishing 600 more treatment beds.

  • Joanne Flowers