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Federal Legalization Bill Scheduled for House Vote This Week, New Legislation Could Ban Delta-8 THC in Tennessee, and Lawmakers in Colorado Reject Proposal for Cannabis Consumer Employment Protections

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Flickr @ Brian Stalter

Federal Legalization Bill Scheduled for House Vote This Week

Last week, leaders in Congress confirmed that the House of Representatives plans to vote on legislation to federally legalize cannabis this week. This is only the second time in history such a vote has occurred. The bill is the Marijuana Opportunity, Reinvestment and Expungement (MORE) Act, sponsored by House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler, which would remove cannabis from the list of federally controlled substances. The Rules Committee will take up the legislation today and prepare it for a full floor vote. The MORE Act was previously approved in a floor vote in December 2020. Besides descheduling cannabis as a federally controlled substance, the bill would also permit those individuals with past cannabis-related convictions to have their records expunged and create a federal tax on the plant. 

New Legislation Could Ban Delta-8 THC in Tennessee

It’s currently fairly easy to find and purchase Delta-8 THC products in Tennessee. You can find them in hemp and CBD shops across the state because while similar to Delta-9 THC, Delta-8 THC is federally legal. As such, there are two bills to regulate the cannabinoid. However, one of the measures would ban Delta-8 THC altogether. HB1927 would make it illegal to sell hemp products that have more than 0.3% THC content. The bill would also create criminal penalties for possession of Delta-8 THC, as it would be classified the same as marijuana in the state. HB1927 could have an unfortunate impact on Tennessee’s hemp cultivators, as they may be forced to harvest their crops early to avoid being in possession of what could technically be considered marijuana.

Lawmakers in Colorado Reject Proposal for Cannabis Consumer Employment Protections 

Last week, a Colorado House committee defeated a bill that would have provided protections for employees who consumed cannabis off the clock. The original bill would also have permitted medical marijuana patients to use their medicine while at work. The legislation was gutted during a hearing before the House Business Affairs and Labor Committee, removing all of the language that would have provided those protections to provisions to simply form a task force to examine the issues and challenges surrounding cannabis use and employment. However, even the amended bill was ultimately defeated in a 1-12 vote.

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