HOUSTON - The 87th Legislative Session started Tuesday, and with that over 20 marijuana or pot-related bills have already been authored.
Katharine Harris, with Rice University's Baker Institute for Public Policy, this says this legislative session could be a big year marijuana.
That’s after the U.S. House passing a historic bill to federally decriminalize back in December.
"It does send a powerful message to states as to what they should be prioritizing in term of drug policy and enforcement."
Rep. Gene Wu with District 137, which covers Southwest Houston, has authored a bill that would decriminalize marijuana for possession of one ounce or less. He too thinks the political atmosphere will be different, saying he is confident significant changes are on the way in next few years.
"These things take time, whether this session or the next, or the one after marijuana in Texas is going to become legal. I think it’s a vote that should be put to the voters," said Wu.
Harris says another big thing to look out for is medical marijuana bill advancement.
Back in 2015, the state enacted the "compassionate use program" but Harris says it wasn’t comprehensive.
"I think what you’re going to see this session for one; is there are several bills that will expand medical marijuana in the state that include PTSD as a qualifying condition," said Harris. " You are also going to see a big push to increase the cap on the THC content."
Harris currently says the program only gives access to a form of CBD oil that’s very low in THC and the cap is at .5%.
"That level of .5% is super low, some patients can benefit, but a major will need an increase to that cap to make the medicine more effective for the patients," said Harris.
To view the bills that have been authored, click here.