Marijuana News Roundup: 7 Marijuana-related Bills Introduced in US Congress

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A total of seven bills that would support the marijuana industry were introduced in Congress last Thursday, three in the Senate and four in the House. The Senate bills were all sponsored by Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR), including one co-sponsored by Senators Rand Paul (R-KY) and Michael Bennet (D-CO). The House bills were introduced by Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), Carlos Curbelo (R-FL), and Jared Polis (D-CO). The new bills seek similar, but not identical, changes to U.S. laws related to the cannabis industry.

Both houses of Congress will consider legislation that would allow industry businesses in states where marijuana is legal to deduct costs of doing business from their taxes. If passed and signed by the President, legal marijuana businesses would be treated like any other U.S. business for the purposes of tax filing.

The House and Senate are also considering reforming banking laws that would guarantee cannabis industry participants access to banks, provide for bankruptcy protection, and prohibit civil forfeiture against legal businesses, among many other. One bill was introduced in the Senate and two in the House related to these changes.

Finally, both houses will consider removing marijuana from the list if federally controlled substances and establish an excise tax on cannabis not to exceed 25% of the sale price.

DEA Asks Colorado AG’s Office for Info on Marijuana Crimes, “for the new administration”
Amid speculation about how the Trump administration will confront marijuana legalization in states such as Colorado, a Drug Enforcement Administration supervisor has sent an e-mail to a prosecutor in the state attorney general’s office seeking information, “for the new administration.”

The e-mail was sent early last month by a supervisor on the financial investigations team in the DEA’s Denver field office to Michael Melito, a senior assistant attorney general. The e-mail asks for Melito to provide case numbers for several prosecutions relating to marijuana, including one that involved multiple people charged with growing pot illegally in Colorado and then shipping it out of state.

The e-mail was first reported by the International Business Times, which obtained it through an open records request.

“Some of our intel people are trying to track down info regarding some of DEA’s better marijuana investigations for the new administration,” the e-mail states. “Hopefully it will lead to some positive changes.

Read more at The Denver Post.