Murphy Starts to Expand Access to Medical Marijuana in New Jersey

Having campaigned on a pledge to fully legalize marijuana, Gov. Philip D. Murphy took the first step toward expanding access to the drug in New Jersey on Tuesday, signing an executive order that would ease regulations on the use of marijuana for medical purposes.

New Jersey legalized medical marijuana in 2010, but Mr. Murphy’s predecessor, Chris Christie, a Republican, kept tight limits on the drug, including on which conditions could qualify for prescriptions.

The new executive order directs the New Jersey Department of Health to conduct a 60-day study of the state’s medical marijuana program with a focus on how to increase access to it. The review will seek to lift restrictions on doctors in the state who prescribe the drug, review the number of conditions the drug can be prescribed for, consider the possibility of offering edible marijuana products, and allow more dispensaries to open in the state.

Before signing the order, Mr. Murphy, a Democrat, criticized the Christie administration approach.

“The system we have inherited can best be described as medical marijuana in name only,” Mr. Murphy said during an event in Trenton. “With a hostile administration tugging the…

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