The Democratic leader of a key U.S. Senate committee on Monday released the text of legislation that, if enacted, would finally allow Washington, D.C. to legalize recreational marijuana sales—in contravention of the wishes of President Joe Biden.
The new bills and attached report language announced by Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-VT), which are part of a package of legislation to fund the federal government for Fiscal Year 2022, also contain several additional cannabis-related provisions. Among others, they would continue an existing protection for state medical marijuana laws, call on the federal government to reconsider policies that fire employees for cannabis, criticize the restrictive drug classification system that impedes scientific research and encourage the development of technologies to detect THC-impaired driving.
The House included its own cannabis-related legislative provisions and report language on many of these issues in large-scale appropriations legislation it passed in July. Since then, the 2022 fiscal year technically started on October 1 but the government has been operating on a temporary “continuing resolution” for spending while the Senate has worked to catch up on its bills.
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