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GOP Congressional Committee Approves Bill To Block Marijuana Rescheduling, While Rejecting State Cannabis Protections Amendment

A key GOP-led House committee has approved a large-scale spending bill that would block the Justice Department from rescheduling marijuana, while also amending a longstanding rider protecting medical cannabis states from federal interference by adding new language to authorize enhanced penalties for sales near schools and parks. Members also rejected an amendment that would have extended those protections to all state and tribal cannabis programs, including those allowing recreational use and sales.

At a House Appropriations Committee hearing on Tuesday, the panel passed the legislation covering Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies (CJS) with the hostile marijuana provisions attached.

The bill as approved in committee would block the Justice Department from using its funds to reschedule or deschedule marijuana. This comes amid an active rulemaking process to move cannabis from Schedule I to Schedule III of the Controlled Substances Act (CSA), as DOJ formally proposed earlier this year.

SEC. 623. None of the funds appropriated or other wise made available by this Act may be used to reschedule marijuana (as such term is defined in section 102 of the Controlled Substances Act (21 U.S.C. 802)) or to remove marijuana from the schedules established under section 202 of the Controlled Substances

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