Texas legislators are back in Austin for another round of policy considerations, and Rep. Eddie Lucio III has introduced HB 85, a medical cannabis improvement bill. This proposal would allow some patients to access whole plant cannabis, including those with terminal cancer, multiple sclerosis, autism, or Parkinson’s Disease.
This bill is more restrictive than the bill introduced during the regular session, but it would still be a major step forward for many seriously ill patients. Currently, the Compassionate Use Program only allows those with intractable epilepsy access to low-THC cannabis. Texas cannabis businesses are expected to be operational by the end of the year.
This will be a very politically charged special session, established to address a specific list of issues that Gov. Greg Abbott and other Texas conservatives consider priorities.
On Monday, Texas House Representative Eddie Lucio, III introduced House Concurrent Resolution (HCR) 149, which requests that the Lieutenant Governor and the Speaker of the House of Representatives create a joint interim committee to study the feasibility of allowing medical cannabis in Texas.
While a resolution is not required to hold an interim committee study, passing this one will ensure that the study takes place. It also sends a signal that legislators care about patients.
Twenty-nine states and the District of Columbia have enacted statewide provisions allowing patients access to cannabis therapy. Texas patients deserve these same protections.
If you are a Texas resident, please contact your lawmakers and urge them to support HCR 149.