Here Are The Marijuana Amendments Congress Could Vote On Soon

By Tom Angell | August 25, 2017

Congress will consider a large federal spending bill in September, and a number of lawmakers are working to attach marijuana amendments to it.

See below for a first look at those proposals, many of which appear likely to pass — if House Republican leadership doesn’t stop them from being considered in the first place.

(For more background information, including the success of similar amendments in the past as well as context on why GOP leaders have recently been blocking cannabis measures from being voted on, see this MassRoots piece from earlier this week.)

Protecting State Medical Cannabis Laws

SEC.__. None of the funds made available under this Act to the Department of Justice may be used, with respect to any of the States of Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming, or with respect to the District of Columbia, Guam, or Puerto Rico, to prevent any such State or jurisdiction from implementing a law that authorizes the use, distribution, possession, or cultivation of medical marijuana.

Sponsors: Reps. Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA), Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), Don Young (R-AK), Jared Polis (D-CO), Tom McClintock (R-CA), Barbara Lee (D-CA), David Joyce (R-OH), Steve Cohen (D-TN), Matt Gaetz (R-FL), Dina Titus (D-NV), Mike Coffman (R-CO) and Jason Lewis (R-MN).

Protecting State Marijuana Legalization Laws

SEC. __. None of the funds made available in this Act to the Department of Justice may be used, with respect to any of the States of Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming, to prevent any of them from implementing their own laws that authorize the use, distribution, possession, or cultivation of marijuana on non-Federal lands within their respective jurisdictions.

Sponsors: Reps. Tom McClintock (R-CA), Jared Polis (D-CO), Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), Justin Amash (R-MI), Mike Coffman (R-CO), Steve Cohen (D-TN), Carlos Curbelo (R-FL), Denny Heck (D-WA), Barbara Lee (D-CA), Ed Perlmutter (D-CO), Mark Pocan (D-WI),  Mark Sanford (R-SC), Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA) and Don Young (R-AK).

Protecting State Cannabidiol (CBD) Laws

SEC.__. None of the funds made available by this Act may be used to prevent a State from implementing any law that makes it lawful to possess, distribute, or use cannabidiol or cannabidiol oil.

Sponsor: Rep. Scott Perry (R-PA)

Letting Washington, D.C. Legalize And Regulate Marijuana Sales

Page 507, line 23, insert ‘‘Federal’’ after ‘‘No’’.

Sponsors: Reps. Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC), Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA), Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) and Barbara Lee (D-CA).

Permitting Marijuana Businesses To Access Banks (1)

SEC.__. None of the funds made available under this Act may be used, with respect to the States of Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming, or the District of Columbia, to prohibit or penalize a financial institution from providing financial services to an entity solely because the entity is a manufacturer, producer, or person that participates in any business or organized activity that involved handling marijuana or marijuana products and engages in such activity pursuant to a law established by a State or a unit of local government.

Sponsors: Reps. Denny Heck (D-WA), Don Young (R-AK), Matt Gaetz (R-FL), Ed Perlmutter (D-CO), Barbara Lee (D-CA) and Dina Titus (D-NV).

Permitting Marijuana Businesses To Access Banks (2)

SEC.__. None of the funds made available under this Act may be used to modify the guidance issued by the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network titled “BSA Expectations Regarding Marijuana-Related Businesses” (FIN-2014-G001; published on February 14, 2014).

Sponsors: Reps. Denny Heck (D-WA), Don Young (R-AK), Ed Perlmutter (D-CO), Barbara Lee (D-CA) and Dina Titus (D-NV).

Permitting Marijuana Businesses To Access Banks (3)

SEC.__. None of the funds made available under this Act may be used to revoke the guidance issued by the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network titled “BSA Expectations Regarding Marijuana-Related Businesses” (FIN-2014-G001; published on February 14, 2014).

Sponsors: Reps. Denny Heck (D-WA), Don Young (R-AK), Ed Perlmutter (D-CO), Barbara Lee (D-CA) and Dina Titus (D-NV).

Expanding Marijuana Research (1)

SEC.__. None of the funds made available by this Act may be used to pay the salaries or expenses of personnel to fail to act on any application by an agency or department to grow marijuana for research purposes if all other requirements of law with respect to such application are met.

Sponsor: Rep. Jared Polis (D-CO)

Expanding Marijuana Research (2)

SEC.__. None of the funds made available under this Act to the Department of Justice may be used to prevent or delay the approval of an application, which complies with all applicable requirements, submitted to the Attorney General to possess, distribute, or manufacture a schedule I controlled substance, including marihuana, for the purposes of conducting research, for a substance that is legal for medicinal use pursuant to State law in Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin and Wyoming.

Sponsor: Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL)

Protecting State Hemp Programs

SEC.__. None of the funds made available by this Act may be used to prevent a State from implementing its own State laws that authorize the use, distribution, possession, or cultivation of industrial hemp, as defined in section 7606 of the Agricultural Act of 2014 (Public Law 113-79).

Sponsors: Reps. Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR),Jared Polis (D-CO), Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), Darren Soto (D-FL) and James Comer (R-KY).

Moving Money Away From Drug Enforcement Administration Marijuana Eradication Toward Child Abuse Victims And Deficit Reduction

Page 280, line 21, after the first dollar amount, insert ‘‘(reduced by $9,000,000)’’.

Page 286, line 3, after the dollar amount, insert ‘‘(increased by $4,000,000)’’.

Page 286, line 23, after the dollar amount, insert ‘‘(increased by $4,000,000)’’.

Page 296, line 8, after the dollar amount, insert ‘‘(increased by $3,000,000)’’.

Page 347, line 16, after the dollar amount, insert ‘‘(increased by $2,000,000)’’.

Sponsors: Reps. Ted Lieu (D-CA) and Jared Polis (D-CO).

Moving Money Away From Drug Enforcement Administration Toward Testing Rape Kits

Page 280, line 21, after the first dollar amount, insert ‘‘(decreased by $4,000,000)’’.

Page 298, line 21, after the dollar amount, insert ‘‘(increased by $4,000,000)’’.

Sponsors: Reps. Steve Cohen (D-TN) and Carolyn Maloney (D-NY).

Blocking Suspension Of Drivers Licenses For Drug Offenses

SEC.__. None of the funds made available in this Act may be used to administer, implement, or enforce section 159 of title 23, United States Code.

Sponsors: Reps. Beto O’Rourke (D-TX), Justin Amash (R-MI), Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY and Jerrold Nadler (D-NY).

There are several other amendments to increase funding for drug treatment and interdiction and responses to opioid overdoses.

The House Rules Committee will meet in early September to determine which amendments will be allowed votes on the floor. Current federal funding levels and policy riders are set to expire on September 30, but it is anticipated that Congress will enact a short-term extension, perhaps through the end of the year, as lawmakers continue work on appropriations legislation for Fiscal Year 2018.

See this MassRoots article for more details.

Tom Angell

Tom Angell is a senior political correspondent for MassRoots. A 15-year veteran in the cannabis law reform movement, he covers the policy and politics of marijuana. Separately, he serves as chairman of the nonprofit Marijuana Majority and is editor of the daily Marijuana Moment newsletter.

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