NEW ALBANY, Ind. (WDRB) -- Indiana lawmakers on both sides of the aisle have made a push to legalize marijuana, but it is dependent on changes made at the federal level first.
Indiana House Bill 1039 was introduced Monday, authored by State Rep. Jake Teshka, R-District 7, and co-authored by Rep. Steve Bartels, R-District 74, Rep. Doug Miller, R-District 48, and Rep. Justin Moed, D-District 97.
If passed, once marijuana is removed as a "federal schedule I controlled substance," it would legalize marijuana use for anyone 21 years and older, and for people with serious medical conditions who have a doctor's permission.
The bill would also create the Indiana Cannabis Commission to oversee, implement and enforce regulations. It would also create a cannabis excise tax and revenue would be deposited in the state general fund.
Michele Finn is an active advocate for legalizing marijuana. Finn owns Michele's Apothecary in downtown New Albany where she legally sells Jubilee of Wellness Delta 8 and other THC products.
Finn was introduced to aromatherapy and CBD products when looking for a holistic approach to help her mother, who underwent radiation treatments during a battle with leukemia.
"I saw a very urgent need and didn't want to lose my Mom," Finn said.
She said House Bill 1039 is a "good starting point," but is critical of lawmakers moving too slow on legalizing marijuana, and said there are several people who are missing out on its benefits.
"I chose to break the law in order to save my Mom's life and I am so grateful that I did," Finn said.
Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb has not shared his thoughts on this current bill, but he and other Republican lawmakers have said previously they're reluctant to legalize it in Indiana, as long as it remains illegal under federal law.
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