SB 58, a bill sponsored by Sen. Scott Wiener (D-CA), has recently passed the California State Senate with an impressive vote of 21 to 16. The bill seeks to legalize certain psychedelics in the state and facilitate their use for therapeutic purposes.
This is a more narrowly tailored version of a bill that was proposed last session, which ultimately failed due to significant changes made during its progression through committees. To bypass these delays this time, the rule of “gut and amend” was utilized – allowing SB 58 to skip some committee consideration and proceed directly toward full Senate approval.
This version of the bill no longer includes a clause to allow for the possession and use of certain synthetic psychedelics. While this may limit the bill’s scope, it is beneficial since it allows legislators to move forward with more targeted legislation that can still positively impact psychedelic reform in California.
Additionally, the revised version does not include any study proposals – likely due to Senator Wiener’s argument that such research has already been done extensively and continues to be conducted today.
With these changes, SB 58 now proceeds towards consideration by the Assembly and could potentially become a model for other states’ legislatures seeking similar reforms. The passage of this bill would provide access to therapeutic psychedelic treatments and meaningful research opportunities.
If passed, this bill could pave the way for even more incredible advancements in psychedelic medicine. It remains to be seen whether or not SB 58 will ultimately pass through the Assembly and become law. Still, its passage through the Senate marks a significant milestone for advocates and researchers pushing for greater access to psychedelics in California.
Major Changes to SB 58
There have been several major changes to SB 58 since its introduction. One of the most significant changes is that the proposed legislation no longer includes a clause permitting the possession and use of certain synthetic psychedelics, such as LSD and MDMA. Additionally, peyote—a psychedelic cactus native to Mexico and Texas—is also excluded from the bill.
Another change to expedite the process was removing study proposals from the bill. Senator Wiener argued that extensive research has already been done on psychedelics and that further studies are continuously being conducted today. As a result of these changes, SB 58 is now more narrowly tailored and focused on providing access to therapeutic psychedelic treatments rather than conducting new research.
As part of SB 58, a possession limit has been established for certain psychedelics. For example, individuals aged 21 and up can possess up to two grams of DMT, 15 grams of ibogaine, two grams of psilocybin, or two grams of psilocyn (or up to four ounces of plant matter containing either substance).
This legislation is important because it clarifies the legal status of these substances while allowing individuals access to them for therapeutic purposes. It is also beneficial because it seeks to decriminalize psychedelic use and protect those who choose to participate in this form of therapy from prosecution.
Ultimately, should the bill pass through the Assembly and become law, it would be a major victory for advocates and researchers working to bring access to psychedelics in California.