Arizona: Governor Vetoes Legislation Permitting Commerce In Industrial Hemp

Update: Governor Doug Ducey vetoed the measure on May 22. He said that he did so because lawmakers failed to include adequate funding to make the proposed program operational. 

Update: House members approved the measure by a vote of 53 to 2 on May 9.
Update: House members on May 8 gave preliminary approval to a slightly amended version of SB 1337.
Update: Members of the House Standing Committee and the House Appropriations Committee both passed SB 1337 by votes of 7 to 1 and 12 to 1 respectively.
Update: SB 1337 passed in the Senate with a vote of 26-4 and is being transmitted to the House.
Update: Senate Bill 1337 was passed by the Senate Appropriations Committee by a 10 to zero vote, and by the Senate Commerce and Public Safety Committee by a 6 to 1 vote. 
Legislation is pending, SB 1337, to permit for the licensed production of industrial hemp.

The proposal redefines hemp as a legal agricultural product and finds, “[T]he development and use of industrial hemp can improve the economy.”

It adds, “The purpose of the [legislation] is to promote the economy and agriculture in this state by allowing the development and regulation of industrial hemp.”

Arizona is one of the only states that fails to recognize hemp as an agricultural commodity rather than as a controlled substance.

Please use the prewritten letter below to urge lawmakers to support this legislation.

Federal: Protect Lawful Medical Marijuana Programs

Update: House and Senate lawmakers have signed off on the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2017 to fund the federal government through September 30, 2017. The measure reauthorizes and updates the Rohrabacher-Blumenauer amendment, as well as a similarly worded amendment protecting state-sponsored industrial hemp programs. Both amendments will remain in effect until September 30, at which time members of Congress will once again need to either reauthorize the language or let the provisions expire. Non-medical retail marijuana businesses operating in the eight states that regulate adult use sales are not protected by this act and still remain vulnerable to federal interference or prosecution.
Since 2014, members of Congress have passed annual spending bills that have included a provision protecting those who engage in the state-sanctioned use and dispensing of medical cannabis from undue prosecution by the Department of Justice. The amendment, known as the Rohrabacher-Blumenauer Amendment, maintains that federal funds can not be used to prevent states from “implementing their own state laws that authorize the use, distribution, possession or cultivation of medical marijuana.” 

Congress re-authorized the amendment as part of a short term spending package. This bill extends federal funding through September 30, 2017, at which time the measure — and the Rohrabacher-Blumenauer amendment — will expire.

According to recently released nationwide survey data, the majority of Americans are on our side. A whopping 94 percent support the medical use of marijuana. Perhaps most importantly, 71 percent of voters — including strong majorities of Democrats, Republicans, and Independents — say that they “oppose the government enforcing federal laws against marijuana in states that have already legalized medical or recreational marijuana.”

Please enter your information below to contact members of the incoming Congress and urge them to include these important patient protections as part of any future, long-term appropriations legislation. 

This amendment is strongly supported by both voters and lawmakers and ensures the safety of millions of patients. Congress must not turn its back on those millions of Americans who rely on these state-authorized programs for their health and wellness. 

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