Marijuana News

Talks of Rescheduling Cannabis at the Federal Level Circulate Washington

Talks of Rescheduling Cannabis at the Federal Level Circulate Washington


While there will be much speculation over the next year or so about exactly what rescheduling will look like and its real-world implications for the cannabis industry, it is clear HHS’ announcement is being welcomed by industry participants and advocates alike and takes the United States one step closer to a post-prohibition reality. That is truly something to celebrate.

The impending rescheduling of marijuana in the United States holds significant potential for revolutionizing the cannabis industry. Initiated by President Biden, this decision, likely to occur before the 2024 presidential elections, has the power to eradicate the crippling effects of Section 280e of the IRS tax code on cannabis businesses, thereby rendering them more profitable.

Currently, under federal law, legal cannabis businesses are treated as drug traffickers, forbidden from claiming typical business deductions. This is due to the 280e provision, applicable only to Schedule I and II substances. Rescheduling marijuana to Schedule III would abolish this provision, alleviating financial strain and enabling the industry to thrive.

Rescheduling is not just about profitability; it also implies easier access to institutional banking and lending for the cannabis sector. The elimination of 280e could bring in new capital sources and lenders, who may perceive reduced risk due to softer federal stances. This could mean smaller institutions might feel safe enough to participate, stimulating lending in an industry where it's remarkably tough to secure.

The removal of this section could also inject new life into publicly traded cannabis companies whose stock values have drastically plummeted. Rescheduling may encourage the Toronto Stock Exchange to accept U.S.-based cannabis companies, potentially reinvigorating the industry and restoring investor confidence.

Moreover, the rescheduling could prompt legislative action, with Congress now potentially more equipped to pass bills like the SAFE Banking Act and other comprehensive reforms. Armed with the health agency's recommendations, advocates for reform may push to remove related penalties and restrictions, positively impacting both businesses and consumers.

The rescheduling of marijuana is a momentous stride towards a post-prohibition reality, one that is being celebrated by industry participants and advocates. The implications are vast, reaching far beyond profitability. It offers a brighter future for the cannabis industry, with easier access to banking, potential legislative action, and an overall more favorable environment.


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