Medical marijuana bill clears early hurdle in second New York passage attempt

A bill legalizing the use of medical marijuana passed the New York State Assembly Health Committee for the second time Tuesday.
Credit: Metro file photo

A bill legalizing the use of medical marijuana passed the New York State Assembly Health Committee for the second time Tuesday, a week after Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced his own reversal on the issue.

The Compassionate Care Act was passed by the full Assembly last June but failed to clear the Senate. Still, supporters are hoping national momentum will propel the legislation forward this year.

“With the advantage of 20 states and the District of Columbia having gone before us, the Compassionate Care Act incorporates lessons learned and best practices from those states,” the bill’s sponsor, Manhattan Assemblyman Richard Gottfried, said in a statement. Gottfried is also the chair of the assembly’s health committee.

He said the bill is still necessary despite the governor’s recent endorsement of medical marijuana.

Cuomo said in last week’s State of the State address that he would consider reviving a 1980 statute permitting limited use of medical marijuana for certain diseases.

“New York has the opportunity to alleviate the pain and suffering of residents with cancer and other severe illnesses,” the governor said. “Medical research shows that the use of marijuana may alleviate the symptoms associated with serious debilitating or life-threatening illnesses.”

Gottfried said that Cuomo’s proposal leaves out certain patients.

“The legislature needs to enact legislation this session that is more comprehensive,” he said.

The bill was sent to the Codes Committee. Along with other committees, that group must pass the measure before the bill is put before the whole Assembly.

Follow Anna Sanders on Twitter @AnnaESanders


Earth Day New York food toolkits to help…

Hundreds of classrooms across New York City already have indoor container gardens that allow students to grow food right where they learn. But Earth Day…


NYPD announces street closures for United Nations General…

The United Nations representatives are in town, and multiple city streets will be closed to traffic through Saturday, Sept. 26. The NYPD is urging those…


Flood Wall Street protesters shut down lower Manhattan…

Riding the momentum of Sunday’s People’s Climate March, more than a thousand protesters filled Broadway in lower Manhattan on Monday, shutting down traffic. Flood Wall…


Mayor pledges lower greenhouse gas emissions from New…

Just hours before the start of the People’s Climate March on Sunday, and two days ahead of the United Nations Climate Summit, Mayor Bill de…


Antoine Fuqua can kill someone with just a…

It's amazing what you can get done with the right tools. In designing the climactic battle in "the Equalizer," in which Denzel Washington's retired special…


Guess Ben Kingsley's worst filmmaking experience

Here's a fun game: Sir Ben Kingsley has made a lot of films since "Gandhi" in 1982, but at least one of them was a…


Does Lena Dunham have any secrets left?

Get a sneak peek at her new book to determine if it’s worth the read.


List: David Bowie — Great (cracked) actor

With the documentary "David Bowie Is" hitting theaters, we round up his work as a terrific screen actor, in films like "The Prestige" and "The Hunger."


Jay Cutler takes Marc Trestman's coaching to heart

While Jay Cutler turned to an autobiography on the man who would be his head coach, Trestman had personal experience with the player.


Jets vs. Bears: 3 things to watch

Jets fans likely chalked up Monday's matchup with the Bears as a loss when the NFL schedule came out. But given their team's play so…


Rashad Jennings carries Giants in first win this…

Rashad Jennings, who came to New York from Oakland last year, by way of Jacksonville, was highly coveted this offseason by general manager Jerry Reese.


3 things we learned as Giants pick up…

The Giants picked up their first win of the season over the Texans.


Here are this year's most creative college application…

The college application essay is one of the only times during the admissions process where a student can showcase his or her personality. While many…


Your older siblings probably had a big impact…

As many high school students agonize over where to go to college, it turns out they turn to a very familiar source for advice and…


Now you can eat Momofuku while you work

Now you can eat Momofuku at your desk


4 ways to help at-risk high school students

Each year, a reported 1.3 million high school students drop out of school, a number so high that many experts say addressing it is one…