A congressional committee is planning to hold a vote on a bill to end the federal prohibition of marijuana, and it’s happening next week. At least that’s what multiple media outlets are reporting. The legislation is sponsored by House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY), and it would completely remove cannabis from the Controlled Substances Act (CSA) and allocate money to start repairing the damage that legalization has already one.
According to Forbes:
Those programs—such as job training and legal aid for people impacted by prohibition enforcement, loans for small cannabis businesses owned and controlled by socially and economically disadvantaged individuals and efforts to minimize barriers to licensing and employment in the legal industry—would be paid for with a new federal five percent tax on marijuana sales instituted under the bill, and some of them would be administered by a new Cannabis Justice Office in the Department of Justice. (source)
More importantly, the legislation would expunge the records of those with cannabis convictions while it was illegal, and provide resentencing as well as block federal agencies from denying public benefits or security clearances as a result of marijuana use and protect immigrants from being denied citizenship over cannabis.
“Our marijuana laws disproportionately harm individuals and communities of color, leading to convictions that damage job prospects, access to housing, and the ability to vote.” Nadler said in a press release. “Recognizing this, many states have legalized marijuana. It’s now time for us to remove the criminal prohibitions against marijuana at the federal level. That’s why I introduced the MORE Act, legislation which would assist communities disproportionately impacted by the enforcement of these laws.” (source)
It’s going to be interesting to see where this goes.
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