On May 4, 2022, South Carolina’s medical marijuana bill — SB 150, also known as the South Carolina Compassionate Care Act — was ruled unconstitutional by the state’s House of Representatives.

The constitutional challenge was mounted by Rep. John McCravy, who argued that because the bill involves the creation of a new tax, specifically on medical cannabis, that the bill should have originated in the House, per the South Carolina constitution. House Speaker Pro Tem Thomas Pope agreed with Rep. McCravy’s argument and ruled the bill unconstitutional.

The bill’s sponsor, Rep. Tom Davis, appealed the ruling, but the House voted 59-55 to table the appeal, stopping the bill in its tracks. In response to this tabling of his appeal, Rep. Davis stated he would be “working on” getting the bill a “merits up or down [vote] in the House,” before the Legislature closes in mid-May.

While the ruling dealt a blow to the bill’s momentum, it is notable that the bill has not yet seen a vote on the merits — this setback was strictly a procedural one. The bill, which would allow patients with qualifying medical conditions to buy, possess, and use cannabis from state-licensed dispensaries, was passed by the Senate in February 2022. The bill has 14 listed cosponsors and was passed unanimously by the House Medical, Public, and Municipal Affairs Committee before stalling out on the House floor.

To learn more about the proposed bill – and about similar legislation in North Carolina – watch Bradley’s “Cannabis Across the Southeast – Carolinas” webinar and subscribe to the Budding Trends blog for updates.

Photo of Rachel M. LaBruyere Rachel M. LaBruyere

Rachel LaBruyere is a privacy and litigation associate in Bradley’s Charlotte office. She regularly advises clients on CCPA and GDPR compliance issues. Before joining Bradley, Rachel served as a Legal Intern in the United States Attorneys’ Office and an Appellate Litigation Intern in…

Rachel LaBruyere is a privacy and litigation associate in Bradley’s Charlotte office. She regularly advises clients on CCPA and GDPR compliance issues. Before joining Bradley, Rachel served as a Legal Intern in the United States Attorneys’ Office and an Appellate Litigation Intern in the Office of the General Counsel at the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Prior to law school, Rachel spent more than five years managing digital strategy for technology companies.

Photo of Whitt Steineker Whitt Steineker

As co-chair of Bradley’s Cannabis Industry team, Whitt represents clients in a wide range of cannabis issues. In addition to providing a full suite of legal services to cannabis companies, Whitt and the Cannabis Industry team advise non-cannabis clients – from banks to…

As co-chair of Bradley’s Cannabis Industry team, Whitt represents clients in a wide range of cannabis issues. In addition to providing a full suite of legal services to cannabis companies, Whitt and the Cannabis Industry team advise non-cannabis clients – from banks to commercial real estate companies to insurance companies and high net worth individuals – on best practices for interacting with cannabis companies.

Whitt is one of the leading voices in the cannabis bar – recognized as a “Go-To Thought Leader” by the National Law Review. He has presented on cannabis issues at conferences around the country.  His work has been featured in the National Law JournalLaw360, and the Westlaw Journal. And he has been quoted in an array of legal and mainstream publications from Law360 and Super Lawyers to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and the Associated Press.