Image of Georgia Governor Nathan Deal signing a bill to leagalize Maedical Marijuana
Chris Shaw ~ FOX 5 ~
 
ATLANTA - Few bills that Governor Nathan Deal signs into law bring the amount of people or appreciation, or emotion that the bill he signed Thursday did.
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Click Here to see the You Tube Video (34:28)
 
"It certainly touched my heart," Deal said, fighting back tears, during the ceremony. "And I'm just pleased that today that we're going to make a difference, and it's going to be a good difference."
 
The medical marijuana law Georgia has today, began with a small group of parents who have children with severe seizures rallying lawmakers. People like Sebatien Cotte, who moved his son to Colorado to get cannabis oil treatment.
 
"We started 10-15 people and we've gathered here today and we can come home now, that's what it means," Cotte says.
 
Although the children have become the face of the medical marijuana movement, the law will affect many more people.
 
"I'm 61. And I've been dealing with this all my life," Vivian Mack says.
 
What Mack deals with is the excruciating pain that comes with Sickle Cell Disease. The new law says cannabis oil with low amounts of the chemical that gets people high, can legally be prescribed to patients with Sickle Cell, Cancer, Crohn's Disease and Parkinson's. The state says half a million people could qualify.
 
"It gives me hope. Yes it gives me hope," Mack says. "And I appreciate everything that's been done."
 
The new law says patients must get a doctor's approval to get the prescription and the patient must then register with the state, which will administer a license-like card, allowing the person to carry 20 ounces of cannabis oil. 
 
"So for everybody worried that it's going to open it up to too many people, it's not going to do that. It's a good process; we just need to get the oil to Georgia. Now that's the main thing," Cotte says.
 
That's the complication for every patient. The new law does not allow marijuana to be grown in Georgia, so patients must go to a state like Colorado for the prescription, then risk breaking federal law by bringing the oil back over state lines.
 
"We'll just do what we have to do. We just won't advertise it, and we do what we have to do and once we're back here, we're ok," Cotte says.
 
Seven families have been given early registration cards and can now be in possession of the oil in Georgia. The state says it will be about 30 to 60 days before the system is ready for other patients.
 
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