No deal reached on medical marijuana bill by NYS lawmakers - NEWS10 ABC: Albany, New York News, Weather, Sports

No deal reached on medical marijuana bill by NYS lawmakers

Posted: Updated: Jun 17, 2014 03:41 PM
ALBANY, N.Y. – Governor Cuomo's office has confirmed that no deal has been reached for the medical marijuana bill.

Lawmakers did not reach a deal on the Compassionate Care Act on Monday, but the bill has been amended. However, Cuomo says he will not sign the newly amended medical marijuana bill as it currently stands in the legislature.

Senate leaders still need to vote to bring the bill to the floor.

"It certainly can be done and I'm hopeful it will be done. There seems to be good will and determination all around,” said Assemblyman Richard Gottfried (D-Manhattan). 

Gottfried has been a key supporter for the medical marijuana bill. Although all sides appear optimistic on Tuesday, Cuomo said during a radio address in the morning that they are not exactly close to a deal.

"This is not about commas and dotting i's and crossing t's. This is about basic agreements to the principles first,” said Cuomo.

Senator Savino's office confirmed on Tuesday morning that amendments to the medical marijuana bill were made before the midnight deadline on Monday. They said the senate and assembly negotiations worked to compromise with Cuomo's wishes on medical marijuana. 

The bill would allow patients with one of 20 diseases to be administered marijuana under the supervision of a healthcare professional, with no age restrictions.

"There are very small infants with a rare but severe form of epilepsy that can and should be treatable by medical marijuana,” said Gottfried.

Cuomo says he has two concerns with the current bill. The first is that he doesn't believe patients should be allowed to smoke it. Second, he wants a sunset provision included. That would address what he calls public health or safety issues that might arise as a result. Our local senate republicans echoed those sentiments.

"I have significant concerns from the professionals, I understand the politicians, but I understand this is a very serious matter," said Cuomo.

Last week, Governor Cuomo commented on the issue, saying he's open to it with certain conditions but explained that he's worried about the drug being exploited.

“You still don't have FDA approval, you don't have federal government approval, you don't have dosage approvals and recommendations,” said Senator Betty Little (R) Glens Falls.

Top legislatures from the New York State Assembly and Senate met with Governor Cuomo on Monday in order to come to a resolution as to what medical marijuana should look like in the state.

The assembly has already passed the Compassionate Care Act, which would allow medical marijuana use in New York, back in May.

The Senate Health Committee also passed a medical marijuana bill, but the entire senate had not voted on the topic. 

Legislative session is scheduled to end Thursday.

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