Virginia's General Assembly passes two marijuana-related bills

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RICHMOND, Va. (WHSV) -- In this year's session of Virginia's General Assembly, 17 marijuana-related bills were proposed. Out of those, the House and Senate voted to pass two.

One focuses on driver's license reform, which could offer alternatives to adults with misdemeanor marijuana charges.

Right now in Virginia, your driver's license is automatically suspended for six months with any drug possession charge, regardless of whether it involved a motor vehicle or not.

This new reform will allow a judge to determine the outcome for first offenders, with alternatives including community service.

Virginia Norml, an organization focused on marijuana reform in Virginia, was excited for bipartisan participation with these bills.

"What this really helps do is open up the conversation and help lawmakers realize that this truly is a bipartisan effort and the demand for this type of reform is abundant, not only within their communities but within the legislature itself," Jenn Michelle Pedini, Executive Director of Virginia Norml, said.

The other bill passed allows pharmacies to manufacture and produce cannabidiol oil and THC-A oil to treat epilepsy.

These bills await signature by leaders of the House and Senate before heading to Gov. McAuliffe's desk.

WHSV has spoken with families in the Valley before whose children could greatly benefit from medical marijuana due to a variety of diseases.

A bill that would have allowed marijuana to be grown in the state for medicinal uses was proposed as well.