As of February 3, 2022, Mississippi has become the 37th state to legalize medical marijuana. Senate Bill 2095, otherwise known as Mississippi Medical Cannabis Act, passed in the legislature and was signed into law by Mississippi governor, Tate Reeves. The new bill allows for the regulation of production and distribution of cannabis for patients with certain medical conditions, including cancer, PTSD, spinal cord disease, and other qualifying medical conditions.
The legislation allows qualified patients to purchase up to 3.5 grams of marijuana flower or up to 1 gram of cannabis concentrate per day from a local, licensed dispensary. Medical marijuana patients will not be allowed to purchase more than 3 ounces of marijuana flower per month and the THC levels in marijuana flower is capped at 30%, while concentrates will be capped at 60% THC.
Additionally, there is currently no limit on how many licensed dispensaries can operate in the state. Medical marijuana patients will pay the state’s 7% sales tax along with an additional 5% excise tax.
Opposition to Marijuana Legalization
The new law comes after significant hurdles in the legalization process. According to the Marijuana Policy Project (MPP), an advocacy group for marijuana legalization, “On November 3, 2020, 69% of Mississippi voters cast their ballots in favor of enacting a medical cannabis program. On that same ballot, 74% voted for a broad program — Initiative 65 — while rejecting a far more restrictive alternative lawmakers had placed on the ballot, Initiative 65A. Subsequently, the state Supreme Court found that the state’s signature requirements for ballot measures could not be complied with and threw out not only Initiative 65, but also the entire state’s ballot initiative process.
“On January 26, 2022, the Mississippi Legislature gave its final approval to the Mississippi Medical Cannabis Act (SB 2095), sponsored by Sen. Kevin Blackwell, to restore voters’ will by creating a medical cannabis program. Gov. Tate Reeves (R) signed the bill into law on February 2, 2022.”
Passage of the new bill is good news for medical patients in Mississippi who have long awaited legalization of marijuana to help ease symptoms.