Sunday, September 10, 2017
Limit on DOJ funding for medical marijuana prosecutions extended to December 2017 in stop-gap spending bill
As reported in this prior post, last week early developments in the US House of Representatives made uncertain the prospects for continuation of the spending rider that currently blocks the US Justice Department from going after state-compliant medical marijuana actors. But, as this Cannabist article reports, another stop-gap spending bill keeps the DOJ spending limit in place for at least another three months. The article is headlined "Rohrabacher-Blumenauer medical marijuana protections extended by debt limit deal," and here are the details:
Existing federal protections for medical marijuana states are expected to continue through at least Dec. 8. The $15.3 billion disaster aid package, debt limit increase and government spending extension approved by Congress on Friday includes the existing Rohrabacher-Blumenauer provision, which prevents the Justice Department from using funds to interfere with the 46 states that have legalized some form of medical marijuana.
The aid bill, which was sent to President Donald Trump, extends the omnibus legislation passed in May and will fund the government through Dec. 8. The short-term spending fix is also a short-term victory for Rohrabacher-Blumenauer sponsors, which were dealt a blow by the House Rules Committee earlier this week. The legislative committee nixed the amendment from House consideration for the fiscal year 2018 funding bill.
“We have at least three months of certainty now, but the fight isn’t over,” officials for Rep. Earl Blumenauer, D-Oregon, told The Cannabist on Friday. That fight includes efforts to land the provision in the final spending bill, officials said, noting the language was included in the Senate Appropriations Committee’s approved version of the bill.