NC Senate Committee Votes to Advance Medical Cannabis Legalization Bill

On Tuesday, the North Carolina Senate Committee voted to advance a bill that would legalize medical cannabis in the state. The vote was split down party lines with Democrats voting for and Republicans voting against.

The nc legalization 2021 vote is a recent development in the United States. The North Carolina Senate Committee has voted to advance a bill that would legalize medical cannabis in the state.

Six years ago, a legislative committee in North Carolina voted vehemently against medical cannabis legislation, but things have changed dramatically since then. On Tuesday, August 24, a North Carolina Senate committee approved a revised measure to legalize medicinal cannabis statewide in a historic vote.

A separate version of the law was passed by the Judiciary and another committee in July, prior to its adoption. However, in early August, the bill was re-referred. The most recent ruling shows that the plant in its medical form is gaining acceptability. 

The newest information comes one week after the proposal was discussed at a hearing. During that meeting, however, members of the panel failed to endorse any revisions. The most recent breakthrough for medicinal cannabis in North Carolina came as a result of a voice vote by Senators.

What’s Next for Senate Bill 711?

Before moving to the Senate floor and perhaps the House of Representatives, the measure must first get approval from the Senate Health Care and Rules and Operations Committees. The governor’s signing on North Carolina’s medicinal cannabis law would be the last step.

The Marijuana Policy Project’s senior legislative counsel, DeVaughn Ward, stated, “We’re pleased that SB711 has been approved by the Judiciary Committee.” “This is a critical stumbling block that has been overcome on the way to complete passage.”

In March 2015, however, a group of Republican war veterans were unhappy when their effort to legalize medicinal cannabis was denied by legislators. A nonpartisan committee in the Republican-led North Carolina legislature unanimously voted “no” to the proposal, which might have allowed veterans to lessen the symptoms of mental health issues including post-traumatic stress disorder if it had been authorized (PTSD). 

About the Medical Cannabis Legalization Bill in North Carolina

Patients diagnosed with a “debilitating medical condition” may legally get medicinal cannabis in North Carolina if the measure, which was supported by Rules Committee Chairman Bill Rabon (R), is passed into law. Patients would need to be reevaluated by their healthcare practitioner/doctor for at least one year after enrolling.

Multiple sclerosis (MS), Parkinson’s disease, epilepsy, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and HIV/AIDS are among the medical illnesses listed as qualifying requirements in the proposed law. Patients who depend on hospice care, as well as those who are terminally ill, are now eligible for medicinal cannabis under the committee-amended measure.

Qualifying medical cannabis patients in North Carolina may lawfully possess up to one and a half ounces of pharmaceutical-grade cannabis, in addition to being able to acquire cannabis-based medications and cannabis-infused goods with a valid doctor’s prescription. Cannabis growing in the home, on the other hand, would be prohibited.

Patients in North Carolina who qualify for medicinal cannabis would be allowed to smoke and vape the plant. Based on the patient’s health state and qualifying circumstances, physicians would be required to recommend an appropriate dose and manner of consumption under the revised law.

In the most recent replacement version of North Carolina’s medical cannabis legislation, the definition of what constitutes a “cannabis-infused” product was changed. Cannabis-infused products are defined as “a tablet, a capsule, a concentrated liquid or viscous oil, a liquid suspension, a topical preparation, a transdermal preparation, a sublingual preparation, a gelatinous cube, gelatinous rectangular cuboid, lozenge in a cube or rectangular cuboid shape, a resin or wax,” according to the revised bill’s language.


A 13-member Compassionate Use Advisory Board, which has yet to be formed, would be in charge of introducing new qualifying circumstances. In addition, the revised medical cannabis law in North Carolina asks for the formation of a nine-member Medical Cannabis Production Commission. This Commission would be in charge of licensing, patient cannabis supply, and income collection from program-allocated funds.

In North Carolina, up to ten medical cannabis suppliers may grow and sell the drug. 

If North Carolina’s medical cannabis bill becomes law in the near future, the number of medical cannabis providers authorized to handle the sale and production of the plant will be limited to ten. Each supplier may be able to run up to four dispensaries.

These growing restrictions have sparked a backlash from a number of cannabis activists throughout the state. The primary source of worry is eligibility, with advocates and lobbyists for legal cannabis speculating on who would be qualified for a growing license.

Medical cannabis cultivation applicants in North Carolina must first show documentation proving they have at least five years experience “in cultivation, production, extraction, product development, quality control, and inventory management of medical cannabis in a state-licensed medical or adult-use cannabis operation,” according to the amended measure.

Dispensaries and licenses would be handled solely by legal out-of-state cannabis firms under the specified norm, according to supporters, leaving tiny, in-state enterprises isolated from industry participation.

“While we support medical marijuana legalization and the benefits it will bring to North Carolina patients, we are worried about the lack of possibilities for small and independent businesses,” said Ward of the MPP.

North Carolina Must Catch Up to the Rest of the United States

Medical cannabis is allowed in 36 states and Washington, D.C. as of August 2021. In terms of recreational cannabis, 18 states have passed legislation to make it legal. 

With more states beginning to recognize the plant’s broad range of applications, as well as the industry’s growing worth, North Carolina may greatly profit from catching up. This past April, legislators in Virginia (the state’s northern neighbor) approved a measure legalizing adult-use cannabis.

Due to the absence of authorized medical cannabis in North Carolina, patients who need plant-based therapy are compelled to either go without or seek the plant from unregulated black market sources. Furthermore, money is being left on the table — medicinal cannabis in the United States is projected to produce $12 billion by 2024.

Elon University found that 73 percent of state voters support medical cannabis legalization in a survey conducted in conjunction with The Charlotte Observer, The Durham Herald-Sun, and The Raleigh News & Observer. Furthermore, slightly more than half of people want the state to pass a recreational cannabis legalization legislation. Surprisingly, 64 percent of people surveyed think that legalizing marijuana will help North Carolina’s economy.

On August 24, committee members also adopted a second amendment that was backed by the state attorney general’s office during the hearing. The amendment raised concerns about probable cause for evidence discovered during drug searches.


The nc compassionate care act is a proposal that will legalize medical cannabis in North Carolina. The bill was passed by the Senate Committee and now moves on to the full Senate for a vote.

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