Medical marijuana law changes get through Pennsylvania House

Marijuana buds are seen in a glass jar

Marijuana buds are shown at Huron View Provisioning in Ann Arbor, Mich., Thursday, Jan. 28, 2021. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya)

The state House on Monday approved a set of revisions to Pennsylvania’s medical marijuana law, seeking to make permanent some of the changes put in place temporarily because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Representatives voted 164 to 38 for the bill, which would permit dispensing a three-month supply at a time, up from one month’s supply. Patients will be able to continue to pick up their medicine outside a dispensary, rather than coming inside the building.

State Health Department communications director Barry Ciccocioppo said the agency was concerned about provisions of the bill he said threaten product quality and patient safety.

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“ We look forward to working with the legislature to resolve these concerns for the best interest of Pennsylvanians,” Ciccocioppo said.

The legislation would also let caregivers provide help to more than five patients at once and would ease the process by which contaminants must be removed before the final testing. Grower-processors would be permitted to use pesticides under standards the Agriculture Department would develop.

It would permit facilities to use motion detector activated security surveillance, rather than having the system running at all hours.

Most Democrats supported the bill, while about a third of House Republicans were opposed. It was sent to the state Senate.

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