Marijuana supporters see reasons for optimism

WILKES-BARRE — When Les Stark of the Keystone Cannabis Coalition organized a rally in Wilkes-Barre last year, he was excited at the prospect of new state laws on medical cannabis and industrial hemp.

He’s still waiting, but the status of marijuana in Pennsylvania may be changing. Several bills are moving through the state Legislature. Stark, of Exeter Township in Berks County, is confident that when he organizes an event next year in the city, medical cannabis and farmed hemp will be legal in the state.

One bill regarding medical use of marijuana is currently in the House of Representatives Rules Committee. Until it comes back, Stark and other advocates of the plant don’t know what the legislation will say. He is worried it will be a weaker bill with more restrictions than he would prefer, but if it changes the law in the only state in the northeast without medical...

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