PHILADELPHIA, May 19, 2014 — With the Pennsylvania General Assembly moving forward on legislation to legalize medical cannabis, state Sen. Anthony H. Williams today said he will hold a forum next month, in partnership with the University of Pennsylvania School of Law, to discuss the pros and cons of legalizing marijuana in the commonwealth.

The forum will begin with registration at 9:30 a.m. on Saturday, June 14, in the Fitts Auditorium on Penn Law’s campus.

Williams said the wide-ranging discussion that is expected during the forum will include dialogue about how potential revenue from a tax on legal marijuana would help Pennsylvania increase its investments in education and impact the state’s pension problem, plus other potential uses of that new revenue.

Marijuana_Debate350px_June14_2014“My forum promises to be an interesting, informative and inspirational inaugural step into a controversial subject,” Sen. Williams said. “I know there is more than one side to this story, which is why this conversation will be all-encompassing and include voices of opposition, messages of support, and questions of possibility.

“Pennsylvania has learned volumes about medical cannabis in the past few months. We’ve also learned that the commonwealth is in desperate need of dramatic new sources of revenue to solve age-old and growing problems,” he said. “I am looking forward to the conversation.”

Representatives with diverse perspectives in business, education, government, religion, and medicine are scheduled to participate in the forum, including:

  • Derek Rosenzweig, Philly NORML and co-founder of Pennsylvanians for Medical Marijuana
  •  Yesha Ministries Bishop J. Darrell Robinson
  • Philadelphia City Councilman Jim Kenney
  • Dr. Jahan Marcu, Americans for Safe Access Multidisciplinary Scientific Advisory Board and the 2012 “Cannabis Researcher of the Year” and
  • George Forsythe, former Maryland State Policeman and a member of Law Enforcement Against Prohibition, or LEAP

Media coverage is encouraged.

WHO:Sen. Anthony H. Williams, advocates and opponents of marijuana legalization

WHEN:9:30 a.m. (registration), 10 a.m. – 12 noon (forum), Saturday, June 14

WHERE:Fitts Auditorium, University of Pennsylvania Law School, 3501 Sansom St., Philadelphia


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