STATES Act Gathers Support From U.S. Governors

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The Strengthening the Tenth Amendment Through Entrusting States (STATES) Act, if adopted, will also benefit the USA’s industrial hemp industry.

We briefly mentioned the Act’s bill yesterday, which is designed to not only ensure each state has the right to determine its own approach to marijuana , but would also strike industrial hemp from the definition of “marihuana” in Controlled Substances Act. Additionally, it would enable financial institutions to work with state approved cannabis businesses.

Twelve Governors have signed a letter expressing their support for the passage of the STATES Act. The letter says in part:

“The STATES Act is not about whether marijuana should be legal or illegal; it is about respecting the authority of states to act, lead and respond to the evolving needs and attitudes of their citizens.”

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The Governors to sign were those of New Jersey, Massachusetts, California, Alaska, Colorado, Maryland, New York, Nevada, North Dakota, Oregon, Pennsylvania and Washington.

“I support Senator Warren’s and Senator Gardner’s efforts to entrust states with the ability to protect patients, providers and businesses, as New Jersey seeks to expand marijuana for both medical and adult use,” said New Jersey Governor, Phil Murphy. In March, Governor Murphy announced sweeping changes to his state’s medicinal marijuana program to make it more patient-friendly.

The legislation has also been endorsed by organizations including the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and Americans for Safe Access.

U.S President Donald Trump has already indicated he may support the Bill.

The full text of the STATES Act Bill as introduced can be viewed here.

“Red and blue states alike have taken their own thoughtful approaches to marijuana,” said U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren, one of the sponsors of the Bill. “Now, 12 governors – led by Republican Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker – have endorsed my bipartisan bill with Senator Cory Gardner to help end the confusion between states and the federal government, and fix America’s broken marijuana policy.”

To date, 46 states have laws permitting or decriminalizing marijuana or marijuana-based products, as well as Washington D.C., Puerto Rico and Guam.