The Compassionate Care Act passed the Senate Health Committee Tuesday!
We still have a ways to go before medical marijuana will be legal in New York State, but this is a huge step forward for patients with serious and debilitating conditions.
Meanwhile, we're also building momentum in the Assembly. Tuesday May 20th, the bill passed through the Assembly Codes Committee, and a Republican Assemblyman Ray Walters signed on as a co-sponsor of the bill.
What’s next? Now the revised bipartisan bill makes it ways through the rest of the committees in both the Senate and Assembly before being sent to the Senate and Assembly floors for a full vote. In the Senate, up next is the Finance Committee. In the Assembly, up next is the Ways and Means Committee.
Jason Pinsky of Endocannabinoid.Systems and a promoter of the bill tells me, "We need to keep up the pressure on the leadership in Albany -- Senate Co-Leaders Dean Skelos and Jeff Klein; Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver; and Governor Cuomo. Call them and urge them to support the Compassionate Care Act. Patients can’t wait another year!"
He also says, "it’s important to contact each Senator on the Senate Finance Committee and urge them to support the Compassionate Care Act. It only takes a few seconds. Be polite and tell them a personal story that relates if you have one."
The legislative session ends on June 19th -- so now is the time to turn up the heat!
Here are the next steps:
Take action: it’s important to contact every Senator on the Senate Finance Committee and urge them to support the Compassionate Care Act. Below is a list of all the Committee members and their phone numbers / emails. There are a lot of Committee members, so we’ve ranked them by level of urgency – those at the top of the list are most in need of hearing from supporters!
Visit NORML's "Take Action Center"
Thank Senator Larkin: Senator Larkin was the deciding vote and the lone Republican to vote for the bill in the Senate health Committee. Please call him at (518) 455-2770 and thank him for his support.
Call Leadership: We need to keep up the pressure on the leadership in Albany – Senate Co-Leaders Dean Skelos and Jeff Klein; Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver; and Governor Cuomo. Call them and urge them to support the Compassionate Care Act. Patients can’t wait another year!
Senator Dean Skelos, Temporary President and Majority Coalition Leader:
Senator Jeffrey Klein, Temporary President and Majority Coalition Leader:
Governor Andrew Cuomo:
NYS Senate Finance Committee - ranked by level of urgency:
John A. DeFrancisco (Chair)
Hugh T. Farley
John J. Flanagan
Martin J. Golden
Joseph A. Griffo
Andrew J Lanza
Kenneth P. LaValle
Carl L Marcellino
Jack M. Martins
Michael F. Nozzolio
Michael H. Ranzenhofer
James L. Seward
John J. Bonacic
William J. Larkin Jr.
Thomas F. O'Mara
Timothy M. Kennedy
Neil D. Breslin
Martin Malavé Dilan