Rep. Brandon Potter’s (D) proposal passed Monday in a 54-11 vote, sending it to the Senate for consideration.
Another Senate bill by Sen. Megan Kallman (D) also recently went under discussion in a specific House committee hearing, but members decided to hold it back for further study before scheduling a vote.
The proposal would eliminate criminal penalties for possessing and growing up to one ounce of psilocybin for personal use, and people could also share that amount with others over the age of 18, starting July 1.
The law states that if the Federal Food and Drug Administration (FDA) reprograms psychedelia, which the agency has already designated as a breakthrough therapy, then the Rhode Island Department of Health “must establish rules and regulations related to cultivation, distribution and prescription medicine.”
In the event that the FDA expands its access program, the State Department would also need to authorize locations to administer psilocybin to “patients with a severe or life-threatening mental or behavioral disorder, who lack access to effective mental health medications or behavioral.”
Before passing the bill last week, the House Judiciary Committee adopted an amended version of the bill that adds a July 1, 2025, sunset clause.
The review would also require the state attorney general to file a report with both chambers before the injunction expires, detailing the violations issued for possession, cultivation and distribution of psilocybin.
Additionally, the head of the health department is expected to file a separate report to lawmakers with FDA psilocybin programming and “permitted use to treat mental or behavioral disorders.”
There are some expectations that the FDA will approve the therapeutic use of psilocybin, as well as MDMA, possibly within the next year or two at the latest. Health officials in the Biden administration are “exploring” the creation of a psychedelics-focused task force in anticipation of possible reform.
(Marijuana Moment of 06/12/2023)
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