Maine Gov. Paul LePage vetoes Medical Marijuana Bill

Posted by Sagar Satapathy on July 09, 2018.

Maine Governor Paul LePage (R) on Friday overwhelmingly vetoed a medical cannabis bill that would allow doctors to certify patient use for any medical reason.

Despite receiving strong bipartisan support, LePage, a vocal opponent of marijuana, vetoed the legislation. The set of reforms to the state’s medical marijuana program which the Governor decided to introduce will also help in creating fund for medical marijuana research and allowing dispensaries to become for-profit institutions.

Besides, increase the number of dispensaries in the state from eight to 14. However, the legislature now has the option of overriding the veto, which can be done with a 2/3rds vote. The measure passed with over 2/3rds voting in favor, so there is enough support for an override as long as lawmakers are willing to contradict the governor on this particular issue.

Currently, Maine allows residents to obtain a medical marijuana card if they have certain qualifying conditions, including post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and Alzheimer’s disease. The Governor also vetoed funding for the country jails. He said that the country jails already get enough money from the state and are not accountable for how they spend it.

Lawmakers will deal with these and dozens of other vetoes when they reconvene Monday. In Maine, medical marijuana has been legal since 1999. The state legalized cannabis for recreational purposes in 2013.

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