COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - Colorado wants to offer seven million dollars to research the benefits of medical marijuana.
State medical leaders say they need to be ready for, what could be, a big wave of patients moving to Colorado for medical use of the drug.
In the past most cannabis research has been blocked by federal law.
But years of legalized of medical marijuana sales in Colorado can give researchers the chance to find out if it can help those with various diseases.
"I was diagnosed with chronic leukemia about six years ago. At the time the doctors recommended treatment was wait and see. I've eradicated 85% of the abnormal growth of cancer using only cannabis. 85% gone using only cannabis," explained Bob Crouse, a medical marijuana patient.
The Colorado grant could allow research on seizures, PTSD or marijuana's impact on the teen brain.
"The decision by our government in Denver and Hickenlooper to establish that fund is insightful, proactive and visionary. Why? Because we're doing the same. Hundreds of centers across the state have already invested hundreds of thousands of millions of dollars," said KC Stark, founder of the Marijuana Business Academy.
More than seven million dollars would come from medical marijuana registration fees
"That seven million dollars is nothing, there's over 600 centers here. They have invested probably up to a billion of dollars already. So it's great, it's visionary, it's kind. But it's nothing that we as Americans have not already done before him, but it is a smart idea," said Stark.
It's an idea that many think is just the beginning of a booming business in Colorado Springs
"We can create the Silicon Valley. This is a billion dollar industry and it's kicking off right now. Everyone knows, it Hickenlooper knows it. We are working with our local communities to create jobs, fill buildings, invest in our fellow Americans. Today we announced there will be a Colorado Springs first international expo. It's revolutionary," said Stark.