Medical marijuana changes approved in Wash. House of Representatives

Senate bill would decriminalize medical marijuana

OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) — The House has passed a measure that would overhaul the state’s current medical marijuana system in an effort to bring it into line with the still-developing legal recreational market.

House Bill 2149 passed on a 67-29 vote and now heads to the Senate, which has its own measures addressing reconciling the two systems.

The changes under the bill sponsored by Democratic Rep. Eileen Cody include reducing the amount of marijuana and number of plants patients can possess, doing away with collective gardens and establishing a patient registry.

Lawmakers have worried that the largely unregulated medical system would undercut the taxed, recreational industry, and U.S. Justice Department officials have warned that the state’s medical pot status quo is untenable.