With a week and a day to go in the Special Session of the Legislature, San Antonio State Sen. Jose Menendez is pushing the envelope, introducing a bill to allow the medicinal use of marijuana, News Radio 1200 WOAI reports.
Menendez tells News Radio 1200 WOAI that his bill would authorize the possession and use of marijuana for medicinal purposes, and would set up a system to cultivate and distribute marijuana to dispensaries.
"I am getting tons of e-mails saying, please ask the governor to add this to the call," Menendez said.
Bills sponsored by Menendez and other lawmakers, both Democrat and Republican, to normalize the use of marijuana all failed in the Regular Session. Bills were proposed spanning the gamut from expanding the 'compassionate use' law which was approved in 2015 to allow cannabis oil to treat certain types of epileptic seizure disorder, all the way to complete 'Colorado style' recreational legalization. While some were approved by committee, none was approved in either the full House or the full Senate.
The main reason: Gov. Abbott has stated that, after signing the 'compassionate use' bill in 2015, he will not agree to any other liberalization of Texas marijuana laws.
"I need to be showing that I am doing what I can," Menendez said. "If the governor chooses to add it to the call, the bill is there and it is ready to go."
Several veterans groups campaigned hard for the ability to use marijuana to treat PTSD symptoms. What is called 'medical tourism' is springing up in nearby states from New Mexico to Arkansas, both of which have legalized medical marijuana, as patients travel there to receive care.
The chances of Abbott adding medical marijuana legalization to the call for the special session are zero. No bill can be approved unless it is on the agenda, which is set by the governor.