- Associated Press - Monday, January 23, 2017

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) - Doctors prescribing medical marijuana won’t have to tell Arkansas regulators that the benefits of marijuana outweigh the risks for their patients.

The Arkansas Senate gave final approval Monday to a bill that says doctors don’t need to determine whether marijuana might be a better medicine for people with certain medical conditions. Gov. Asa Hutchinson later signed the bill.

Much of Monday’s debate centered on whether legislators sworn to uphold the U.S. Constitution could make decisions running counter to federal law. While Arkansas voters have OK’d marijuana use by people with certain medical conditions, federal law says otherwise.

Legislators previously said agencies had until May to set rules for the program. They had been due in March under a constitutional amendment voters approved in November. Hutchinson signed that bill, too.

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