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Virginia Delegate Seeks To Decriminalize Marijuana

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By Meymo Lyons

A veteran Virginia legislator is proposing bills to decriminalize small amounts of marijuana and to make it available for limited medical purposes.

But Del. Harvey B. Morgan of Gloucester told a news conference the prospects of passage are not very good. He has no co-sponsors and he doesn't expect to win the support of the law enforcement community.

Under Morgan's legislation, doctors could prescribe and pharmacists dispense medical marijuana. Virginia already has a statute on the books to allow treatment for cancer or glaucoma, but the drug cannot legally be distributed.

Morgan's bill would make possession of small amounts of marijuana a civil offense, rather than a crime, and increase the amount a person can possess without being considered a drug dealer.

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