Marijuana Equity Advocates Propose Changes in MORE Act, CT Governor Ready To Sign Legal Pot Law, More... (6/18/21)

Legislation to make it easier for scientists to get access to marijuana for research purposes is moving in Congress, marijuana equity advocates suggest changes in the MORE Act, and more.

Marijuana was on the agenda at the US Capitol this week. (Creative Commons)
Marijuana Policy

Marijuana Equity Advocates Propose Changes in MORE Act. Activists who want stronger equity protections and to avoid corporate control over the legal marijuana markets have submitted a pair of potential amendments to the Marijuana Opportunity, Reinvestment and Expungement (MORE) Act, HR 3617. The proposals are coming from the Parabola Center, a new group fighting for social justice-centered reforms. One would switch federal authority for marijuana permitting from the Treasury Department to the MORE Act-envisioned Office of Cannabis Justice to "regulate interstate commerce and enforce anti-cartel restrictions, preventing the creation of a national oligopoly similar to the state-level oligopolies that current exist," according to a summary, while the other would end the federal criminalization of marijuana possession, cultivation, and sharing under the Controlled Substances Act, but would not formally deschedule marijuana in order to "protect individual cannabis consumers from federal arrest and prosectution while allowing states to continue to experiment with different typse of equitable cannabis markets."

Marijuana Research Expansion Legislation Moves in Congress. The Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee approved an omnibus bill that includes language that would allow scientists greater access to marijuana for research purposes on Wednesday. The measure would allow researchers in legal marijuana states to use marijuana from dispensaries. A House panel last week approved a transportation bill that includes similar provisions. The legislation comes after decades of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) blocking access to research marijuana and then using the lack of research to oppose rescheduling it

Connecticut Governor Ready to Sign Marijuana Legalization Bill into Law. Marijuana could be legal in the state as early as July 1 after the legislature approved Senate Bill 1201. The bill awaits the signature of Gov. Ned Lamont (D), and Lamont has signaled he will do exactly that: "It’s fitting that the bill legalizing the adult use of cannabis and addressing the injustices caused by the war of drugs received final passage today, on the 50-year anniversary of President Nixon declaring the war," Lamont said in a statement. "The war on cannabis, which was at its core a war on people in Black and brown communities, not only caused injustices and increased disparities in our state, it did little to protect public health and safety." The bill legalizes the possession of up to one and a half ounces by people 21 and over, as well as setting up a system of taxed and regulated marijuana commerce with strong social equity provisions. 

 

 



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