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NJ Legislature Passes Medical Marijuana Law

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

On the last day of their legislative session...the New Jersey Senate and Assembly approved a bill that would make the state the 14th. to legalize medical marijuana. WNYC's Isaac-Davy Aronson has more.

REPORTER: The measure allows patients with ailments such as cancer, AIDS and multiple sclerosis to buy up to two ounces of marijuana a month at state-monitored dispensaries. Governor Corzine is likely to sign it before leaving office next week.

Assemblyman Reed Gusciora, a Princeton Democrat and co-sponsor of the measure, said the law could be a model for other states.

GUSCIORA: We are the strictest in the U.S. We have the most oversight, the most controls, and we require the Depts of Health to report back to us in 2 years as to the program is going.

REPORTER: Incoming Governor Chris Christie had expressed concern about potential abuses, and lawmakers said they didn't want to duplicate what they see as California's overly-liberal laws.

A provision allowing patients to grow marijuana was removed from the bill, and a registry of patients and doctors is intended to prevent so-called doctor-shopping. For WNYC, I'm Isaac-Davy Aronson.

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