NORML’s Legislative Round Up July 22nd, 2016

take_actionThe DEA announced that they will amend their quotas for 2017 regarding the cultivation of research-grade marijuana and hemp legalization bills in Pennsylvania and Rhode Island have been signed into law! We also have updates from Illinois, Florida, and Ohio. Keep reading to learn the latest in marijuana law reform news from around the country and to find out how you can #TakeAction!


In a notice published in the Federal Register, Acting DEA Administrator Chuck Rosenberg proposed amending the amount of marijuana that may be produced under federal license in 2017 to approximately 1,041 pounds. The agency alleges that this quantity will be sufficient to provide for the “estimated medical, scientific, research and industrial needs of the United States.”

The US Drug Enforcement Administration is also preparing to respond to an administrative petition calling for the reclassification of marijuana as a schedule I prohibited substance. Their determination was originally expected in the first half of 2016 but it has yet to be released.


Florida: Next Tuesday, the state’s first state-licensed medical marijuana dispensary will open to the public. Trulieve, a licensed cannabis cultivator and distributor, will provide a high CBD, low THC strain of the plant to patients that are registered with the state. However, as of today not a single eligible patient is registered with the state to legally access the product. This is because Florida’s law, initially passed in 2014, is among the strictest in the country. Under the law, patients diagnosed with cancer, seizures, or intractable muscle spasms are eligible for CBD-dominant cannabis, while those diagnosed with a terminal illness are eligible for THC-dominant cannabis. To date, however, only 15 physicians in the state are participating in the program.

Illinois: Two months ago lawmakers voted in favor of Senate Bill 2228, legislation to decriminalize the possession of small amounts of marijuana. But Governor Bruce Rauner has yet to sign the measure into law. The bill makes the possession of up to 10 grams of marijuana a civil violation punishable by a fine of $100-$200 — no arrest and no criminal record. Currently, those caught possessing that amount could face up to six months of jail time and fines of up to $1,500. The bill also amends the state’s zero tolerance per se traffic safety law.

#TakeAction  and contact Governor Rauner to urge him to sign this legislation into law.

Ohio: Governor John Kasich has signed legislation so that certain drug offenses are no longer punishable by a mandatory loss of one’s driver’s license. Under previous law, any drug conviction carried a mandatory driver’s license suspension of at least six months, even in cases where the possession offense did not take place in a vehicle. Senate Bill 204 makes such suspensions discretionary rather than mandatory. The law will take effect September 13th, 2016.

industrial_hempPennsylvania: On Wednesday, July 20th, Governor Tom Wolf signed legislation, House Bill 967, to establish “a pilot program to study the growth, cultivation or marketing of industrial hemp.” The new law took immediate effect. Twenty-eight states have now enacted similar legislation.

Rhode Island: Governor Gina Raimondo has signed legislation, H8232, to establish rules for the commercial, licensed cultivation of hemp in the state. The legislation creates the “Hemp Growth Act” to treat hemp as an agricultural product that may be legally produced, possessed, distributed and commercially traded. The Department of Business Regulation will be responsible for establishing rules and regulations for the licensing and regulation of hemp growers and processors.

8 thoughts

  1. As November approaches, I’m actually looking forward to people trying to spin whatever NORML posts here to suite their own political beliefs.

  2. Government , Manufactured Illegal Laws pertaining to Hemp and Cannabis ! Any Fool can see that ! The DEA is operating Illegally supporting those Illegal laws . I say this as TRUTH has to be the rule building ANY law and False information does NOT get it . DEA has long held Cannabis as a class one drug , maybe these Corrupt DEA members want it all for themselves !

  3. re; The DEA is
    ‘preparing to respond’,
    to a petition calling for the reclassification of marijuana.

    they are thinking up a stoopid excuse for keeping up the ‘schedule I’ status.

    the more progress we achieve,
    the more they push back,
    with their stoopid excuses, and lies.

    1. We need to disband the DEA, and let individual states decide how they want to deal with pot, and other drugs.
      Marijuana should be a state issue, and a state issue only.

  4. Ooooo… 1,041 pounds of low quality dirt weed available from the exclusive government farm at the University of Mississippi! THAT’ll meet the industry’s research demands! …If we were treating ZERO people on earth with cannabis.

    Look, we realize our Judicial branch still thinks “Congress doesn’t have to be right (or tight)” but Can’t we sue the DEA for violating Antitrust laws yet? Senator Gillibrand already proved with the State Department that the DEA’s defense of the UMiss mmj farm over “UN special sessions treaties” was complete bull$#!+, and with more than half of US states with legal medical marijuana laws and more to come in November, can’t we kick the Commerce out of Congress with an Antitrust lawsuit against the DEA and U.Miss.?
    Oh yeah, we need to get young people to vote for and speak to their Congressional campaigns. Silly me for thinking our Judges would bring us any of that stuff… What is it called? Oh yeah, “justice.”

    Antitrust Violations: Violations of laws designed to protect trade and commerce from abusive practices such as price-fixing, restraints, price discrimination, and monopolization. The principal federal antitrust laws are the Sherman Act (15 U.S.C. §§ 1-7) and the Clayton Act (15 U.S.C. §§ 12-27).

  5. “Look, we knew we couldn’t make it illegal to be Black poor, or young (Hippie) in the United States, but we knew we could criminalize their common pleasure. We understood that drugs were not the health problem we were making them out to be, but it was such a perfect issue that we couldn’t resist it”. John Ehrlichman, Nixon’s Chief of Domestic Relations stated as Nixon’s rational for his “War on Drugs”.
    Nixon hated the Blacks more than the hippies.

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