LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) — A conservative lawmaker from rural, western Nebraska is taking a leading role in the push to allow medical marijuana in the state.

Sen. Mike Groene, of North Platte, introduced a legalization bill that would impose tight controls on the drug.

Groene previously opposed legalizing marijuana for medicinal purposes and has said he changed his mind after hearing from families who said they would benefit.

He also notes that Nebraska, Idaho and Kansas are the only three states that still criminalize all sales of products with THC, marijuana’s active ingredient.

Groene said he doesn’t support two potential ballot measures, one that would allow recreational marijuana and another that would allow people to smoke marijuana for medical reasons.