The Alabama Medical Cannabis Commission will urge state lawmakers to revise the state medical marijuana law to put plants in the ground next year and make the products available to patients sooner, Al.com reported.
The commission also voted to offer state treasurer John McMillan the job of managing director of the new agency that will lead the medical cannabis program. McMillan served two terms as the state agriculture commissioner and is a former commissioner for the state department of conservation and natural resources. McMillan told the news agency he expected to take the job, which would require him to step down as state treasurer. Ivey would appoint a replacement.
Al.com reports that commission vice chair Rex Vaughn said he had spoken to lawmakers about postponing the start date for licensing cultivators from September 1, 2022 to early 2022.
“It could allow us to have a crop in 2022,” said Vaughn. “This is currently our game plan.”
The growth time of plants grown in greenhouses is 90 to 110 days. Unless the September 1, 2022 date is changed, products might not be available until 2023, Vaughn said.
The Legislature is not currently in session, but a special session is expected later in the fall on redistribution. Another could be held for the construction of the prison. It is Governor Kay Ivey’s decision to convene a special meeting and identify the subjects that will be discussed during the meeting.
The 14-person commission oversees a new agency that will license and regulate breeders, processors, safe vans, testing laboratories and dispensaries for medical marijuana products. It will be a national seed-to-sale program of products made from crops grown in Alabama.