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State officials estimate they will need about $2 million in one-time, upfront costs to implement West Virginia’s medical marijuana law.
Dr. Rahul Gupta, state health officer, gave lawmakers that figure during a meeting of an interim health committee, containing members of both the state Senate and the House of Delegates, at the state Capitol Monday.
Gupta, who is also commissioner of the state Department of Health and Human Resources’ Bureau for Public Health, told lawmakers that the DHHR estimates the law, which passed earlier this year, will cost $2 million up front.
DHHR Cabinet Secretary Bill Crouch’s office and Gov. Jim Justice’s office are working on finding the money, possibly through an “internal loan,” Gupta said.
“We would need your help to allow that money to be paid back through legislation,” he told lawmakers.
The West Virginia Legislature passed Senate Bill 386, allowing doctors to recommend medical marijuana for the treatment of certain “serious” medical conditions and tasking DHHR’s Bureau for Public Health with regulatory oversight, in April. Lawmakers