A federal initiative could provide sweeping improvements to cannabis reform
It has been a few weeks since the Cannabis Administration and Opportunity Act (CAOA) was introduced in an effort by Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer to bring federal cannabis reform to life. He, along with fellow Senators Ron Wyden and Ron Wyden, have been doing what they can so that the US can finally have a comprehensive change in the marijuana industry. There is no doubt that the measure would bring about a lot of changes in many aspects related to the plant.
The document is made up of approximately 300 pages and while it is very pointed in what it seeks, it is still unlikely to pass before the mid-term elections. Still, the bill is able to provide a clear picture of what to expect should federal legalization occur in the future.
First and foremost, the CAOA intends to remove cannabis from the Controlled Substances Act (CSA). As a result, people over the age of 21 would be able to use cannabis legally in jurisdictions where it is already regulated. While marijuana could be prohibited within some of their borders, states will not have the ability to prohibit the interstate shipment of marijuana.
The legislation made clear that the unauthorized shipment, transportation, manufacture, possession, receipt, sale, purchase, or distribution of ten pounds or more of marijuana would remain illegal. In addition, the 2018 Farm Bill would also receive some changes as it would define hemp as cannabis with less than 0.7% tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) by dry weight. As a result, it would more than double the current THC threshold of 0.3% for hemp.
Should the CAOA receive the necessary approvals, several federal agencies would be part of the regulation of cannabis at the federal level. For example, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) would be responsible for regulating the manufacture, distribution, and labeling of “cannabis products,” as well as registering manufacturers of marijuana products.