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House committees meet to narrow number of bills


Rep. Noah Sanford


The deadline for bills to be passed out of their respective committees was February 1, a date which whittled approximately 1,500 House bills down to fewer than three hundred.  The past few weeks have largely been filled with committee meetings, but several bills have been debated and passed on the House floor.

House Bill 607 would allow for those who knowingly sell drugs laced with fentanyl to be charged with first-degree murder when the recipient dies as a result.  The bill passed by a margin of 102-7.  Dubbed “Parker’s Law,” the bill was pushed by parents of mostly young adults who have died of an overdose in recent years.  Many sat in the gallery during the debate with photographs of their children.

Senate Bill 2095, the Mississippi Medical Cannabis Act, has passed both the House and the Senate and now heads to the Governor’s desk.  It would create a medical marijuana program for certain debilitating conditions, including cancer, Parkinson’s disease, and diabetic neuropathy, among others.  To prescribe medicinal marijuana, a physician or nurse practitioner would be required to have an in-person visit with the patient, as well as a follow-up six months afterwards.   Grow facilities would be required to be licensed and regulated by the state, and the plants must be cultivated indoors; no plants could be grown outdoors, as such could invite theft and illegal use of the plant.  Further, a tracking program would trace each seed from its delivery to a grow facility to its eventual sale.

In 2020, Mississippi voters overwhelmingly passed Initiative 65, which would have created a very lax medical marijuana program, but the initiative was struck down by the Mississippi Supreme Court in the summer of 2021.  Senate Bill 2095, a response to the public’s seemingly strong support of medical marijuana, is a significantly more conservative, restrictive program than Initiative 65 would have created, but it will allow those with truly debilitating conditions to receive the treatment.

I appreciate the opportunity to serve.  Please contact me if I may be of assistance or if you have questions or concerns.

Noah Sanford represents parts of Covington, Simpson, and Jefferson Davis Counties in the Mississippi House of Representatives.  He can be reached at is an online news source serving Simpson and surrounding counties as well as the State of Mississippi.


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