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Cuomo announces limited NY medical marijuana plan

ALBANY (AP) -- Gov. Andrew Cuomo says his medical marijuana initiative will help New Yorkers suffering from cancer and other severe ailments.

In his State of the State speech Wednesday, Cuomo officially unveiled his plan to allow 20 hospitals to dispense marijuana to people suffering from cancer and some other diseases under state Department of Health regulations. Cuomo is choosing to use his administrative powers rather than push for legislation.

While praising the governor's action, a number of advocates claim the 1980 state law Cuomo relies on will be cumbersome and limit the ability to dispense.

Assemblyman Richard Gottfried says Wednesday he is talking with the Cuomo administration about a new version of medical marijuana legislation he has been sponsoring for years.

There are about 20 states with medical marijuana laws.
   AP-WF-01-08-14 2103GMT
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