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D.C. Readies For Medical Marijuana Law

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By Patrick Madden

District leaders are expected to release a draft of regulations for the city’s new medical marijuana law later today.

The law officially went into effect last week, after surviving congressional review, but District leaders say patients should not expect to buy pot until early next year as the city continues to fine-tune how it wants to implement the law.

D.C. and 14 states have legalized medical marijuana, but the District is the only jurisdiction in the nation that will allow its poorest residents to obtain the drug for free.

The law reads patients "unable to afford a sufficient supply of medical marijuana" will be able to purchase it "on a sliding scale."

The regulations need to spell out how to do that, and also how the city will license the dispensaries and monitor the doctors who prescribe the drug.

Before anything becomes official, the new rules for the program will undergo a public comment and review period, and that could take months.

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