Majority of Georgians support recreational cannabis legalization

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According to an 11Alive News poll conducted by Survey USA, 55 percent of Georgians believe cannabis should be legalized for recreational use in the state. Thirty-five percent of respondent said cannabis should remain outlawed, with 10 percent unsure.

An 11Alive poll in 2016 found 48 percent supported legalization, with 38 percent opposed.

Despite the citizen support for broad reforms, Georgia still has the most limited medical cannabis program in the nation. The state does not allow physicians to recommend medical cannabis, instead allows program registrants to possess up to 20 fluid ounces of low-THC oil.

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The state also provides no legal way to produce or purchase the products in-state. Earlier this month, Gov. Nathan Deal signed legislation adding post-traumatic stress disorder and intractable pain to the program, but lawmakers failed to pass any broad expansion to the regime.

A cannabis legalization measure is pending in the Senate. That bill, which carries no Republican sponsors, is in the Senate Health and Human Services committee. Sen. Curt Thompson, the bill sponsor, estimates a legal cannabis industry in Georgia could bring in $340 million a year in tax revenues. Thompson has also introduced legislation to implement a comprehensive medical cannabisregime.

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