While a bill to legalize medical marijuana in the state of Alabama has hit a halt, a panel to study the issue has been created.

The Medical Cannabis Study Commission met for the first time this week and the panel heard a presentation on the specifics of the bill and on policies in 33 other states that have approved medical marijuana.

The 15-member study commission is tasked with studying medical marijuana and then making a recommendation to the Legislature.

Cynthia Atkinson, who was married to deceased Montgomery television meteorologist Dan Atkinson, who died of Parkinson’s disease in 2017, also spoke to the commission.

Cynthia Atkinson said she and her husband had traveled to Colorado in 2015 seeking relief from his severe leg cramps.

“He had Parkinson’s for over 10 years. At times his legs, most of the time for the last three years, his legs would feel like he was in vice grips,” explained Atkinson.

“He fought the good fight,” Cynthia said. “But I do believe that there would have been a lot less side effects as a result of trying something that’s much more natural. It’s a plant, it’s not a synthetic chemical.”

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