COLUMBUS, Ohio (WDTN) – The Ohio House passed a bill legalizing medical marijuana Wednesday night. The measure now goes to Governor John Kasich.
The House voted on the proposal shortly before 10:30 p.m. It passed, 67-28.
The bill began in the House, and an amended version passed in the Senate earlier Wednesday night by a vote of 18-15, with opposition from some Democrats and Republicans.
Lawmakers are hoping to head-off a well-funded medical marijuana constitutional amendment that could appear on the November ballot.
The bill would allow patients who have one of about two dozen qualifying medical conditions to buy and use marijuana with a doctor’s prescription. These include cancer, seizure disorders, multiple sclerosis and traumatic brain injury.
Unlike the possible ballot measure, this bill would not allow patients to smoke or grow the drug, but it does allow it to be used in vapor form. Certain edibles, oils and patches are also OK.
A Medical Marijuana Control Commission would be created in the Department of Commerce. Doctors would have to apply and register to be able to prescribe medical marijuana, as would those seeking a license to cultivate, process or dispense the drug.
Governor Kasich has said he still needs to look over the entire bill.
The latest polls show 90 percent of registered Ohio voters support legalizing medical marijuana.