Allay’s Founder on the Biggest Potential Impact of the MORE Act
This is an excerpt from an article found on Cannabis Business Times FULL ARTICLE
The U.S. House of Representatives has passed the Marijuana Opportunity Reinvestment and Expungement (MORE) Act, H.R. 3884, to remove cannabis from the U.S. Controlled Substances Act. It passed 228-164…
Cannabis’ removal from the U.S.’ list of controlled substances, said U.S. Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-Texas) in a Dec. 2 Rules Committee hearing, “means that going forward, individuals could no longer be prosecuted federally for marijuana offenses. This does not mean that marijuana would now be legal in the entire United States—a very important point. It will simply remove the federal government from the business of prosecuting marijuana cases and will leave the question of legality to the individual states.” Jackson Lee is an original cosponsor of the act.
The tension between federal and state cannabis policies has long created issues for businesses operating within state-legal cannabis programs….
Kim Stuck, CEO of Allay Consulting, agreed that the biggest impact of the MORE Act on licensed cannabis businesses would be financial.
“Nothing really will change for them except that the federal government can’t impose any rules on states and make them follow,” she said. “They’re pretty much saying, ‘Hey, we’re going to leave it up to the states for what they want to do. We’re not going to go in and make any issues against you for having legal cannabis or anything like that.’ … It’ll definitely bring investors in from other places. It doesn’t make it legal, but it’s not completely illegal. I think that people will be a little more [willing to be involved].”
In addition to descheduling and decriminalizing cannabis, the MORE Act creates a “Criminal Justice Office,” which will, among other things, create a grant program to provide job training and reentry services; and provide legal aid, including for the “expungement of cannabis convictions.”
“Importantly, the MORE Act would legalize cannabis with a focus on social justice and equity—an important step in righting many of the wrongs caused by the decades-long failed War on Drugs,” Culver said.
The act places a 5% federal tax on the sale of cannabis products; that tax will then increase by 1% each year and cap at 8%, according to Congress members who spoke during the Dec. 4 full-floor U.S. House debate.
It also directs the Small Business Administration to create a “Cannabis Opportunity Program” that would “assist small business concerns owned and controlled by socially and economically disadvantaged individuals.”
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