The MORE Act stands for Marijuana Opportunity Reinvestment and Expungement Act. Aka the Marijuana Bill, the MORE Act is inching its way through Congress. But where is it in the legal system now? On April 1st, 2022, the MORE Act passed in the U.S. House of Representatives by a vote of 220-204. While this is promising, it also passed last year in September of 2021 and died in the Senate. Could this year be different? In this article find out what the More Act is, who it benefits, where it’s at in the legal process, and how you can contact your Senator to help make a difference.
What is The More Act, aka Marijuana Bill?
The MORE Act decriminalizes marijuana and eliminates criminal penalties relating to manufacturing, distributing, or possession. The bill also redefines how the government will monitor the economic and social impacts legalized cannabis will have on our nation. And MORE lays out business requirements, studies to be done, and groundwork for potential assistance programs for victims.
The Specifics of the MORE Act
- Removes cannabis from the Controlled Substances Act by replacing all references to marijuana with cannabis
- Changes Cannabis Business Regulations Creates Small Business Loans specific to Cannabis Industry
- Creates 2 new taxes
- Excise tax on cannabis products produced in or imported into the United States
- Occupational tax on production facilities and export warehouses
- Creates 2 new taxes
- Lays the groundwork for assistance and programs for victims of marijuana misuse
- Establishes a trust fund to support programs and services for people impacted by the war on drugs
- Changes in legal convictions and penalties
- Creates review processes for prior criminal penalties related to cannabis
- Forbids denying federal benefits to those previously convicted with cannabis charges
- Prohibits immigration penalties concerning cannabis
- Mandates more Government Research and Reporting on:
- Societal impact
- Business impact
- Economic Growth
Who Does the Marijuana Bill Benefit?
Simply put, legalizing marijuana will benefit everyone in one way or another. From chronic pain sufferers, and soldiers scarred with PTSD, to boosting the economy with more jobs, and even reducing chemical-made plastics with an alternative plastic made from hemp, legalizing cannabis will do more good than harm. Click here to learn more about the sustainability of cannabis. So why all the fuss, human error.
Even though, governments stand to earn a profit from taxing the businesses and consumers a ton, they still hesitate. But keeping marijuana illegal harms more people than it protects. Scientific research has already proven cannabis to be helpful for many illnesses and symptoms. For more information on:
Where is the Bill now?
After the More Act was passed in the U.S. House of Representatives, the bill shuffled to the Senate. On April 4th, 2022, the U.S. Senate received the bill and read it twice. After reviewing it, the bill was sent to the Senate Committee on Finance to be pushed through what is called the “engrossed” process. This simply means the bill will be reworded to fit the Senate’s priorities. No bill passes from the House to the Senate with the same wording. Both houses redefine the bill to fit their concerns, needs, and focus. Thus, the United States House bill titled the MORE Act is currently being redefined for the Senate’s key focuses. To track the progress of the More Act through the U.S. Senate, click here.
Cannabis in the Senate
Once the Finance Committee reviews concerns, the bill will be assigned a new number and pushed into committees for review, amending, debating, and finally voting. Some Senators speculate the bill has a tough climb, but the bill only needs 60 votes out of 100. If we know all the good it can do, why does the bill keep circulating through Congress? According to Roll Call, a newspaper and website that reports discussions during United States Congress sessions, the nation’s laws aren’t set up to govern the impact legal marijuana will have on youth, traffic, banking, and more. While it is hopeful, the bill still has much refining and reform needed before it will pass.
What Can You Do?
The beauty of the government in the United States is we all have access to our senators and representatives. While oftentimes, it may not feel like your opinion matters, it does. Unfortunately, as we’ve discovered, the loudest opinions are those heard. But what if you knew how to reach your Congress officials and plant seeds without a giant ruckus? Well, you can. Click here to contact your senator, and make your voice heard. Say YES to cannabis.