What Federal Changes Mean for Ohio's Medical Marijuana Program
What Federal Changes Mean for Ohio's Medical Marijuana Program
Jeff Sessions ending federal policy that let legal pot flourish
08 January, 2018, 03:09
Marijuana revenue has been used in many ways throughout the state. Several state leaders and supporters of medical marijuana are reacting to the announcement and asking, what's next? "It's because the states want to collect all of those taxes (on marijuana), so it becomes this tax issue", he said.
However, the 2013 "Cole memo" served as a directive for how US attorneys should handle the legalization of marijuana in order for the federal government to exercise a hands-off approach to states legalization.
The State of OR has had a lot of trouble recently with overproduction of cannabis leading to illegal exportation to other states.
The move raised questions about how it might impact tax revenues in states that permit some form of legal marijuana use.
Whatever Elieson's feelings on the issue, marijuana business owners don't believe they're in immediate jeopardy. The only time he's ever acknowledged marijuana was in May 2017, when he note (in a statement) that a spending bill he helped pass included a provision that prevented the DOJ from prosecuting medical marijuana cases in places where it's legal. MA and ME are on track to do so this year.
Sessions' action essentially shifts federal policy from the hands-off approach adopted under the Obama administration to unleashing federal prosecutors to decide individually how to prioritize resources to crack down on pot possession, distribution and cultivation of the drug in those states.
"It is the mission of the Department of Justice to enforce the laws of the United States, and the previous issuance of guidance undermines the rule of law and the ability of our local, state, tribal, and federal law enforcement partners to carry out this mission", Sessions said in a statement. "If they intend to prosecute, it would shut us down".
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While many states have decriminalized or legalized marijuana use, the drug is still illegal under federal law, creating a conflict between federal and state law.
The Trump administration's action seemed incongruous with comments that Trump, a Republican, made during the 2016 presidential campaign.
FILE PHOTO: Customers shop for "Green Friday" deals at the Grass Station marijuana shop on Black Friday in Denver, Colorado, U.S., November 28, 2014.
"We use the money we get from marijuana sales to fund our school resource officer and to bring in a D.A.R.E officer to speak to the schools", North Bend City Administrator Terence O'Connor said.
The former senior Justice Department official behind the decision to harmonize federal prosecutions with state legalization efforts during the Obama told CNN in a phone interview Thursday that it's uncertain how Sessions' new memo will play out at the state level.
"He represents something that is so un-American, as far as I'm concerned", the Texas libertarian said.
It was not immediately clear what practical effect the attorney general's decision would have in states that have legalized marijuana or on the increasingly sophisticated and lucrative legal pot industry.
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