SPRINGFIELD, IL (KMOX) – The Illinois Senate has voted in favor of a law legalizing marijuana for medical use in the state.

The 35-21 vote was much less narrow than a 61-57 vote in the Illinois House last month.

H.B. 1, titled “The Medical Cannabis Pilot Program,” establishes a four-year legal window during which doctors can prescribe marijuana as an alternative to traditional drugs for patients with qualifying chronic diseases.

Bill Haine, D-Alton, was the bill’s Senate sponsor.

“I am glad my colleagues understand that this program alleviates suffering and provides strong safeguards against abuse,” he said in a release. “Patients afflicted by the most unbearable conditions will soon have a compassionate answer to their cries for help.”

The bill now goes to Gov. Pat Quinn for his signature.


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