New Biden Budget Keeps Ban On D.C. Marijuana Sales But Preserves State Medical Cannabis Protections

New Biden Budget Keeps Ban On D.C. Marijuana Sales But Preserves State Medical Cannabis Protections
MJ moment

President Joe Biden is again proposing to keep blocking Washington, D.C. from legalizing marijuana sales as part of the budget proposal for Fiscal Year 2023 that he sent to Congress on Monday. To the relief of advocates, however, he again kept a separate rider intact to protect legal medical cannabis programs from federal intervention. Advocates and lawmakers expressed frustration and disappointment when the president’s last budget failed to remove the D.C. rider, which was sponsored in Congress by Rep. Andy Harris (R-MD) and has continued to be annually renewed. It prevents D.C. from using its local tax dollars from implementing a system of legal adult-use sales even though local voters approved a legalization ballot measure in 2014. Both the House and Senate appropriators removed that language from their Fiscal Year 2022 appropriations legislation in spite of Biden’s request. However, it was ultimately included in a bicameral omnibus spending bill that was introduced by congressional leaders earlier this month and will remain in effect until at least the end of September. The latest Biden budget separately stipulates that D.C. cannot use federal funding to “distribute any needle or syringe for the purpose of preventing the spread of blood borne pathogens in any location that has been determined by the local public health or local law enforcement authorities to be inappropriate for such distribution.” That seems to contravene the administration’s stated support for harm reduction services. But on a positive note for advocates, the 2023 budget proposal maintains a separate rider that prevents the Justice Department from using its funds to interfere in the implementation of medical cannabis programs in states and territories. — Marijuana Moment is already tracking more than 1,000 cannabis, psychedelics and drug policy bills in state legislatures and Congress this year. Patreon supporters pledging at least $25/month get…

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Source : New Biden Budget Keeps Ban On D.C. Marijuana Sales But Preserves State Medical Cannabis Protections

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