Joyce Continues to Lead the Effort to Responsibly Reform Outdated Federal Cannabis Policies

WASHINGTON, DC – Today, Congressman Dave Joyce (OH-14) introduced the Common Sense Cannabis Reform for Veterans, Small Businesses and Medical Professionals Act alongside his fellow Co-Chair of the Cannabis Caucus, Congressman Don Young (AK-At Large). This important legislation aims to responsibly reform the federal government’s outdated and ineffective cannabis policy. 

“With more than 40 States taking action on this issue, it’s past time for Congress to recognize that continued cannabis prohibition is neither tenable nor the will of the American electorate,” said Joyce. “My legislation answers the American people’s call for change and addresses our States’ need for clarity by creating an effective federal regulatory framework for cannabis that will help veterans, support small businesses and their workers, allow for critical research and tackle the opioid crisis, all while respecting the rights of States to make their own decisions regarding cannabis policies that are best for their constituents. I look forward to working with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to get this bill signed into law so that we can enact sensible and meaningful cannabis reform that will improve lives and livelihoods.”

“For too long, the federal government’s outdated cannabis policies have stood in the way of both individual liberty and a state’s 10th Amendment rights. It is long past time that these archaic laws are updated for the 21st Century,” said Congressman Don Young. “As Co-Chair of the Cannabis Caucus and Representative of a state with legal adult-use cannabis, I am proud to help introduce the Common Sense Cannabis Reform for Veterans, Small Businesses, and Medical Professionals Act. This bill takes significant steps to modernize our laws by removing cannabis from the Controlled Substances Act and allowing the VA to prescribe medical cannabis to veterans, in addition to finally permitting state-legal cannabis businesses to utilize traditional financial services. I want to thank my friend, Congressman Dave Joyce, for his leadership on this issue. I call on my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to stand with us in this crucial effort.”

Through his work with the Cannabis Caucus and his position on the House Appropriations Committee, Joyce has helped lead the effort to reform the federal government’s outdated approach to cannabis and protect the rights of states across the country, like Ohio, that have voted to implement responsible cannabis policies. Specifically, the Common Sense Cannabis Reform for Veterans, Small Businesses and Medical Professionals Act, which has been applauded by several organizations, would:  

  • Remove cannabis from the Federal Controlled Substances Act. 
  • Direct the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau to issue rules to regulate cannabis modeled after the alcohol industry within one year of enactment. 
  • Create a federal preemption to protect financial institutions and other businesses in non-cannabis legal states so that they can service cannabis companies.
  • Allow the Department of Veterans’ Affairs to prescribe medical cannabis to veterans.
  • Direct the National Institutes of Health to conduct two studies on cannabis as it pertains to pain management and cannabis impairment and report to Congress within two years of enactment.

“It is incredibly encouraging to see Republican leadership to end the federal prohibition and criminalization of cannabis,” said Steven W. Hawkins, Interim President & CEO of the U.S. Cannabis Council. “Cannabis reform is truly a bipartisan matter ripe for immediate solution. The USCC thanks Representative Dave Joyce for his work and looks forward to supporting the ‘Common Sense Cannabis Reform for Veterans, Small Businesses, and Medical Professionals Act.’”

“We applaud Rep. Joyce’s leadership on pragmatic cannabis legislation that reduces barriers to entry for cannabis businesses, provides access to capital markets and introduces a structure of tax fairness for the industry,” said Wendy Bronfein, Chair of the National Medicinal Cannabis Coalition. “We look forward to working together on this important legislation.”  

“NCR applauds Congressman Joyce’s continued leadership of cannabis reform. We welcome the opportunity to work through this legislation with him as we have a shared goal – that is, allowing the already $18B US cannabis industry to continue to grow as a driver of job creation and economic opportunity for all Americans.” – National Cannabis Roundtable

 

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