Press Release: Marijuana Under the Georgia Gold Dome

Georgia Marijuana Reform Advocates Ready for Legislative Session

Atlanta GA: Advocates for marijuana law reform are preparing for what looks to be a very exciting time under the gold dome. With three marijuana law reform bills pending, 2015 will be a historic year for marijuana proponents.

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James Bell – Georgia C.A.R.E. Director

James Bell director of Georgia C.A.R.E. Project, a leader in cannabis law reform in Georgia, said he hopes all pending legislation will get a fair hearing and Georgia will pass the best legislation possible. His biggest fear is a few legislators will attempt to kill any marijuana bills under consideration.

“We support comprehensive medical cannabis legislation that allows safe access to anyone in need”, Bell said. “Senate Bill 7 by Sen. Curt Thompson is a very good bill modeled after other states legislation. We believe SB-7 will get medical marijuana to the public in a safe and affordable way.”

As to House Bill 1 being proposed by Rep. Allen Peake – Georgia C.A.R.E. has not taken a position on the bill because the details has yet to be filed.

According to Bell, there are concerns that HB-1 will be to restrictive and limited in scope to actually help patents in Georgia who need cannabis for medicine.

Bell also said it is time for lawmakers to consider some form of marijuana legalization or decriminalization. A first step would be to allow for the writing of citations for less than one ounce of marijuana. Offenders would not be arrested and would pay a fine and avoid booking, finger printing and criminal records. A court appearance would be could be required.

Senate Resolution 6, also offered by Sen. Thompson, would be a starting point for the debate on legalization in Georgia. SR-6 would allow a vote by the public on a constitutional amendment to re-legalize marijuana in Georgia. It would be similar to the marriage amendment placed on the ballot a few years ago.

“Marijuana is no more of a crime than wine”, said Bell. “Georgia needs to reexamine why we have criminal penalties up to ten years in state prison for an ounce of marijuana. We believe marijuana law reform should be a part of Governor Deal’s criminal justice reform policy.”

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