1. Media Center
  2. News & Updates

City of Huntsville considers medical cannabis program 

Published on October 11, 2022

Huntsville City Hall on a partly cloudy day

The City of Huntsville is taking cautious steps toward participating in Alabama’s new medical cannabis system.  

After giving careful consideration to the new medical option, City administration believes making medical cannabis products available to qualified patients under the care of a physician would be beneficial for those suffering from chronic and terminal illnesses.  Alabama is the 37th state to allow use of cannabis for medicinal purposes. The law creating Alabama’s medical cannabis system received bipartisan support in the state legislature. 

To begin, the City is proposing a zoning plan, which will be in addition to the layers of state regulation implemented by the Alabama Medical Cannabis Commission (AMCC). Huntsville’s Planning Commission will begin evaluating zoning recommendations Oct. 12.  

As recently enacted state law requires, municipal governments must pass an ordinance and inform the state if they wish to allow dispensing sites to operate in their communities. At the City Council’s upcoming Oct. 13 meeting, the City will introduce an ordinance authorizing dispensing sites in Huntsville. Following Council consideration, a vote could come two weeks later. If Council approves the ordinance on Oct. 27, the City will finalize a zoning plan and implement any needed changes to City license and tax requirements. 

City Council Meeting Update  – Oct. 13

Watch: Medical Cannabis Presentation at 17:00 

View: Slides from Medical Cannabis Presentation

Updated Proposed Ordinances – Oct. 25

Proposed Medical Cannabis Amended Zoning Ordinance

Proposed Medical Cannabis Dispensing Site Ordinance

Udpate: Huntsville’s City Council adopted the Medical Cannabis Dispensing Site Ordinance authorizing dispensing sites in the city limits effective December 23, 2022: 

“We’re taking a thoughtful and measured approach to make certain we get this right,” said Mayor Tommy Battle. 

Mayor Battle emphasizes Alabama’s medical cannabis program does not legalize or sanction recreational marijuana. Rather, it is a strictly controlled and highly regulated program intended to provide a medical-grade product in the authorized form of tablets, cubes, topicals, suppositories, patches, nebulizers and inhalable liquids.  

The conditions for use of medicinal cannabis include cancer-related pain, weight loss, and vomiting; autism spectrum disorder; Crohn’s disease; depression; epilepsy or conditions causing seizures; HIV/AIDS-related nausea or weight loss; panic disorder; Parkinson’s disease; persistent nausea that it not responsive to traditional treatment; post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD); sickle cell anemia; spasticity associated with Multiple Sclerosis or spinal cord injury; Tourette’s syndrome; a terminal illness; and conditions causing chronic or intractable pain.  

To be eligible to participate in the program, patients must be diagnosed with at least one of these qualifying medical conditions by a physician certified by the state to recommend medical cannabis to patients. 

The earliest anticipated date dispensaries could be operable would be mid-2023 after the AMCC grants the licenses. More information is available at amcc.alabama.gov.