by Anne Meyer
9:19 PM CST, January 27, 2013
The new medical marijuana bill in Topeka already appears to going nowhere. A senate committee chairwoman now says the proposal won't get a hearing this session.
Supporters aren't surprised.
The bill in question is the same one that was proposed last year, the year before that, and two years before that. Each time the bill is heard by a committee of lawmakers, but they never take the next step of putting the measure up for a full vote.
That's why Esau Freeman with Kansasforchange.org isn't surprised by this new announcement. He's not deterred either.
Freeman just took over the group in the fall and plans to get more organized.
"Before we were just a loose group of volunteers," Freeman said. "Many people have worked on this issue, but now we have taken the steps to become a incorporation."
"If you have 70% of the people saying that we need to at least have the opportunity to debate the bill, it should be debated," said Wichita Representative Gail Finney.
Finney supports legalizing medical marijuana, but she says it's been hard to get others in Topeka to join the cause. She says that is why similar bills have gotten stuck in the legislative process.
Finney says for things to change it will take action from more people to write their lawmaker and convince more of them to put the medical marijuana bill up for debate.
Until that happens, Finney feels the bill will likely stay in the same cycle of going no where.— A Kansas state senator has proposed a medical marijuana bill.
Kansas City Sen. David Haley, a Democrat, introduced the bill. It would allow Kansas to join 18 states and the District of Columbia in allowing people to use marijuana with a doctor's order.
But Senator Mary Pilcher-Cook, chairwoman of the Senate Health and Welfare Committee, says the measure won't get a hearing during the current legislative session.
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