The Latest Cannabis News

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The UN removes cannabis from a list of the most dangerous substances.

A United Nations commission has voted to remove cannabis from a list that categorized it as one of the most dangerous drugs -- a move that recognizes the plant as having medicinal value.

The UN Commission on Narcotic Drugs approved a recommendation from the World Health Organization on Wednesday the 2nd of December 8, 2020to remove cannabis and cannabis resin from its Schedule IV classification under the 1961 Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs. That designation put cannabis and one of its derivatives in a category alongside heroin and other opioids.

Substances classified as Schedule IV are a subset of Schedule I drugs. That means not only are they considered to be "highly addictive and highly liable for abuse," they're also labeled as "particularly harmful and of extremely limited medical or therapeutic value."

"This is welcome news for the millions of people who use cannabis for therapeutic purposes and reflects the reality of the growing market for cannabis-based medicinal products a group of drug policy advocacy organizations said in a news release.

Wednesday's vote means that cannabis and cannabis resin are no longer classified as among the most harmful substances and are acknowledged as having medical benefits. But they'll still be subject to restrictions under the Schedule I category.

"We welcome the long overdue recognition that cannabis is a medicine," Ann Fordham, executive director of the International Drug Policy Consortium, said in a statement. "However, this reform alone is far from adequate given that cannabis remains incorrectly scheduled at the international level." 

House-Passed Cannabis Legalization Bill Would Add $13.7B To Federal US Budget, Congressional Analysts Say

 

In the United States, the non-medical use of cannabis is decriminalized in 16 states (plus the U.S. Virgin Islands), and legalized in another 15 states (plus Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands, and the District of Columbia), as of November 2020.

As the cannabis industry continues to take root state by state, the House of Representatives voted in favor of removing cannabis from the federal Controlled Substances Act.

The House voted Friday, the 4th of December on the cannabis Opportunity Reinvestment and Expungement Act, or MORE Act, which decriminalizes cannabis and clears the way to erase nonviolent federal cannabis convictions.

The MORE Act also creates pathways for ownership opportunities in the emerging industry, allows veterans to obtain medical cannabis recommendations from Veteran Affairs doctors, and establishes funding sources to reinvest in communities disproportionately affected by the war on drugs.

The federal cannabis legalization bill passed by the U.S. House of Representatives would generate about $13.7 billion in net revenue for the U.S. treasury over the next decade, according to a new report by the Congressional Budget Office (CBO). It would also cut federal prison spending by nearly $1 billion.

Most of the new funds—roughly $8 billion—would come from business taxes on the legal cannabis industry, such as income and payroll taxes. A separate excise tax, initially based on the price of cannabis products, is estimated to yield another $5.7 billion.

“CBO and the staff of the Joint Committee on Taxation estimate that H.R. 3884 would increase revenues, on net, by about $13.7 billion over the 2021-2030 period,” says the nonpartisan report, published Friday.

While the MORE Act faces an uphill battle in the Senate—some have called the issue a nonstarter unless Democrats gain control of the chamber—legalization proponents have nevertheless cheered the bill’s House passage as a major milestone.

 

 

References

  1. UN commission reclassifies cannabis, yet still considered harmful, UN News, https://news.un.org/en/story/2020/12/1079132
  2. Read: U.N. Reclassifies cannabis, By Adam Prescott https://reggaeroast.co.uk/blogs/news/read-u-n-reclassifies-cannabis
  3. House passes historic bill to decriminalize cannabis, by Alicia Victoria Lozano is a Los Angeles-based digital reporter for NBC News, https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/congress/congress-takes-historic-bill-decriminalize-cannabis-n1249905
  4. House-Passed Marijuana Legalization Bill Would Add $13.7B To Federal Budget, Congressional Analysts Say, by Ben Adlin, Marjuanna Moment, https://www.marijuanamoment.net
  5. Decriminalization of non-medical cannabis in the United States, From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Decriminalization_of_non-medical_cannabis_in_the_United_States
  6. House Approves Decriminalizing Marijuana; Bill To Stall In Senate, NPR, by Deirdre Walsh https://www.npr.org/2020/12/04/942949288/house-approves-decriminalizing-marijuana-bill-to-stall-in-senate
  7. House Passes Landmark Bill Decriminalizing Marijuana, by Catie Edmondson https://www.nytimes.com/2020/12/04/us/politics/house-marijuana.html