Ohio Senate panel defers changes to medical marijuana bill

The House passed the legislation last week

FILE - In this May 5, 2015, file photo, a marijuana plant grows at a Minnesota Medical Solutions greenhouse in Otsego, Minn. A southeastern Illinois company says it has started growing medical marijuana and may be the first in the state to do so. Officials at Ataraxia in the Edwards County city of Albion, Ill., said Monday, July 13, 2015 that they received state authorization July 10, and have started cultivating the genetic strains that will be the basis of their products. (Glen Stubbe/Star Tribune via AP)
(Glen Stubbe/Star Tribune via AP)

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) – A state Senate panel has delayed making changes to a proposal that would legalize medical marijuana in Ohio.

The bill would bar patients from smoking the substance but allow them to use it in vapor form. They couldn’t grow it at home. Communities could opt out of hosting dispensaries, and employers who want to maintain drug-free workplaces would be protected from liability.

The bill would create a nine-member Medical Marijuana Control Commission to set rules for cultivating, distributing and licensing cannabis.

The House passed the legislation last week. The Senate’s government oversight committee says changes anticipated Tuesday could now come Wednesday.

Lawmakers want the fast-tracked bill to reach the governor by month’s end.

They’re seeking to head off a proposed November ballot issue supported by the national medical marijuana movement.

(Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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