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Arizona Governor Vetoes Psilocybin Service Centers Bill
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Arizona Governor Vetoes Psilocybin Service Centers Bill

Seraiah Alexander
Seraiah Alexander
June 24, 2024
2 min

Despite a strong bipartisan push, Arizona Governor Katie Hobbs has vetoed legislation that would have established psilocybin service centers in the state, citing insufficient evidence to support its clinical use. Senate Bill 1570, proposed the establishment of medically supervised centers to administer psilocybin for therapeutic purposes and would have created an advisory board for training and recommendations. 

The bill saw overwhelming approval from both the Senate and House. However, according to Hobbs, while the potential therapeutic benefits of psilocybin are promising, the current body of evidence does not justify a broad clinical rollout without more comprehensive research and regulatory frameworks. 

“We do not yet have the evidence needed to support widespread clinical expansion,” said the governor in a letter regarding her veto.  “Arizonans with depression and PTSD deserve access to treatments that may be seen as outside the mainstream, but they should not be the subject of experiments for unproven therapies with a lack of appropriate guardrails.” 

Governor Hobbs pointed out that the estimated $400,000 annual cost of implementing the bill was not accounted for in the state’s budget. The proposed legislation would have significantly expanded Arizona’s current approach to psychedelics, which already includes a $5 million annual fund dedicated to researching psilocybin therapy. 

In her statement, she also notes that these already allocated funds “will allow research to take place with a goal and ensure that those who seek psilocybin treatment are doing so confidently and safely under proper supervision of qualified professionals with documented and verified research to support the treatment.” 

Senator T.J. Shope, the bill’s sponsor, expressed deep disappointment over the veto, noting the overwhelming bipartisan support it gained and the months of effort that went into crafting the bill. 

“I won’t stop fighting for our veterans and first responders to get the mental health care they deserve in these clinical settings,” he said in response to the veto. “Sadly, Arizonans will now have to continue leaving their own state and country to receive this type of treatment. It’s truly a sad day for those who have put everything on the line for us.”

This decision mirrors similar cautious approaches in other states, as lawmakers are increasingly focused on research and pilot programs to gather sufficient data before implementing the widespread clinical use of psychedelics. The veto further highlights the ongoing debate between advancing psychedelics as a therapeutic option while also ensuring that these treatments are implemented safely and effectively with proper regulatory oversight.


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legislation
Seraiah Alexander

Seraiah Alexander

Content Editor

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