Debate over medical marijuana in Kentucky goes on

The debate over medical marijuana in Kentucky picks up across the Tri-State, just a day after a group lobbies Owensboro city commissioners for their support on legalization.

 

It comes as some state officials call for the commonwealth to allow doctors to prescribe it.

From Owensboro City Commission chambers to the streets of Owensboro, the talk over medicinal marijuana legalization gets louder.

 

"It helps people with cancer and helps people if they've got problems. It makes them feel better,” says Leslie Guenther of Owensboro.

 

"I could see its good points and, just like everything else, it has its bad points,” adds Lisa Leonard of Philpot.

 

Groups like Kentucky Cannabis Freedom Coalition ask for city officials to lend their support to allowing doctors to prescribe it.  It comes nearly two months after Kentucky Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes called for a task force to study the issue. Nearly 30 states, including Illinois, already allow it.

 

Owensboro Mayor Tom Watson says any efforts should be done on a county level. But Daviess County Judge Executive Al Mattingly says anything that could relieve pain should be studied, not much can be done at the county level to allow medical marijuana in Kentucky, and that the decision rests at the state and federal levels.

 

"While we might have an opinion, we have no authority to control or authority over those issues. We have no authority over the legalization of marijuana for either medical or recreational purposes. That's a thing that might need to go up the ladder even further,” Mattingly says.

 

"I think it should be left up to the states as well,” adds Tom Pope of Owensboro. But residents don't completely know if medical marijuana will happen in Kentucky.

 

"I think it's not will it ever be, it's just a matter of time,” says Leonard.

 

"We get a lot of taxes off of tobacco, so I doubt it,” adds William Johnson of Owensboro

For the latest breaking news and stories from across the Tri-State, follow Eyewitness News on Facebook and Twitter.

(This story was originally published on January 3, 2018)


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