Medical Marijuana

Shannon and Blaine Cloud have lobbied lawmakers on behalf of their little girl Alaina, who suffers from a severe seizure disorder. Image via WSBTV.com
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Governor supporting new bill to legalize medical marijuana

Jan 13, 2015

 

WSBTV.com -   ATLANTA — Channel 2 Action News has learned Gov. Nathan Deal is supporting state Rep. Allen Peake's plan to decriminalize medical marijuana in Georgia.

Channel 2 political reporter Lori Geary talked exclusively with the governor Friday about the new bill that would mean big relief to families with children who suffer from seizure disorders.
 
Deal told Geary he supports Peake's efforts to offer immunity from prosecution for the families in those states who want to return home to Georgia with the medicine.
 
At least 17 Georgia parents who have kids with severe seizure disorders are in Colorado giving their kids cannabis oil, which doesn't get you high.
 
“It's an important step. We recognize it may not be the last step,” Deal said.
 
Last year, efforts to legalize medical marijuana in Georgia failed on the last day of the legislative session.  It failed when the State Senate tacked on a bill that would mandate insurance companies cover some types of autism therapies. 
 
Republican House leaders balked at that amendment and said it had nothing to do with medical marijuana.
 
Peake is also pushing to legalize the growing and manufacturing of the cannabis oil in Georgia.
 
If only the immunity part passes, the families would more than likely still have to travel out of state to get the medicine. 
 
“While we're not moving as quickly as I’d love to see us go, we're moving in the right direction,” Peake told Geary. “This is a huge step forward.”
 
“I think it's a first step. I don't know if I would use the word huge,” said parent Blaine Cloud.
 
Geary met up with Blaine Cloud and his wife, Shannon Cloud, and filled them in on the governor's decision Friday.
 
Their daughter Alaina Cloud suffers from seizures. 
 
“(It’s) a disappointing day for all of the families because we had high hopes this was going to be the year and Georgia was actually going to do it the right way,” said Shannon Cloud. 
 
“We acknowledge we're not addressing all of the issues that are out there, but we're addressing the ones we consider the most pressing,” Deal said.
 
In a statement from Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle's spokesman Ben Fry, he said, "The Lt. Governor believes that by working cooperatively the General Assembly can find a responsible solution that will provide much needed relief to the children and their families afflicted by these terrible conditions."
 
A new poll from the Atlanta-Journal Constitution found that 84 percent of registered voters support the legalization of cannabis oil. 
 
More than 900 Georgians were surveyed for the poll.

“If you choose to consume, please do so responsibly.” 

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