TOPEKA (KSNT) — Marijuana in Kansas is on hold.
Lawmakers in the Senate Federal and State Affairs committee decided to table Senate Bill 135 and any other cannabis bills for the rest of this year’s session, putting a stop to medical marijuana changes for 2023.
The move comes after law enforcement officers, doctors and republican state officials voiced concerns over the bill, such as testing, mental health and other safety concerns.
The committee’s decision upset many bill supporters as they’re disappointed and frustrated with Kansas lawmakers’ decision.
Supporters of the bill believe this is another example of Kansas falling behind the rest of the United States. Many are upset with lawmakers’ lack of transparency and using out-of-date information from several decades ago as evidence against the bill.
KSNT 27 News met with medical marijuana advocate Kelly Rippel, who expressed his frustration with lawmakers working against a bill they say most Kansans support.
“And so yes, it is a movement by the same individuals who are cornering and pushing lawmakers to vote against the will of the people,” Rippel said. “According to Fort Hays State and the Docking Institute, over 74% of Kansans are in support of medical marijuana.”
With the medical marijuana bill tabled, Kansans can expect no further action unless lawmakers decide to bring it back up later in the session.
If not, Rippel warns, due to election season beginning soon, medical marijuana might not appear in the Kansas legislature until 2025 at the earliest.
However, some advocates plan to appeal to Governor Laura Kelly in hopes she might intervene, as she is a proponent of medical marijuana and has publicly supported its legalization.