The National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) has approved a resolution urging the federal government to take marijuana off the list of scheduled drugs under the Controlled Substances Act.
The group said the Controlled Substances Act should be amended – with the removal of marijuana – to make it easier for banks to serve cannabis businesses.
The vast majority of the nation’s banks are afraid to serve marijuana businesses, fearing the federal government could revoke their banking licenses for working with companies that handle federally illegal substances.
Descheduling would also allow states to determine marijuana policies without fear the threat of federal interference, the NCSL said.
The National Conference of State Legislatures said in 2015 that “federal laws, including the Controlled Substances Act, should be amended to explicitly allow states to set their own marijuana and hemp policies without federal interference.”
There are at least three schedule-related bills in Congress:
- The Marijuana Justice Act, introduced last week by New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker, would legalize marijuana.
- The Legitimate Use of Medicinal Marijuana Act would move cannabis from Schedule 1 to Schedule 2.
- The Compassionate Access Act mandates that the Department of Health and Human Services send an opinion on scheduling to the Drug Enforcement Administration.