The American Trade Association for Cannabis and Hemp (ATACH) has brought together cannabis companies, advocacy organizations, and scientific and legal experts to make the case for scheduling reform in a comprehensive advocacy effort ATACH is calling the Coalition for Cannabis Scheduling Reform (CCSR). CCSR is led and managed by ATACH and is the industry’s campaign for rescheduling. To join or learn more contact Alison Modrak firstname.lastname@example.org.
Coalition for Cannabis Scheduling Reform Launches
Shortly after President Biden’s announcement, ATACH formed the Coalition for Cannabis Scheduling Reform, which was approved by the
ATACH board of directors as a new ATACH committee. This brought together cannabis companies, advocacy organizations, and scientific and legal experts to make the case for scheduling reform in a comprehensive advocacy effort that is being managed and led by ATACH.
Adam Goers and Bryan Barish were named as co-chairs for CCSR, and the organization helped publish CCSR’s June 2023 report as part of the administration’s evaluation process, which can be read here.
Rescheduling Cannabis from Schedule I to Schedule III
On August 30, 2023, it was made public that the federal agency Health and Human Services (HHS) is recommending to the Department of Justice that marijuana should be moved from Schedule I to Schedule III. This process is not complete, but the recommendation alone was historic. It would allow marijuana to be treated more fairly at the federal level for the first time since 1971, when it was first placed in the Controlled Substances Act.
The Controlled Substances Act provides the basic framework by which all drugs are regulated in the US, and marijuana was placed in the most severe category for drugs in the country, Schedule I, more serious than even meth and cocaine. This category creates a lot of unfairness in the system, particularly as states license marijuana businesses to serve qualified consumers. Rescheduling means that the Administration would move cannabis from Schedule I to a less severe category. It isn’t a complete fix, but will provide important relief.
What happens next?
Currently the DEA has the authority to make the final decision, although it was President Biden who set off the process and will be waiting on the agency response. We will know what the DEA’s decision is when they publish proposed rules in the Federal Register. That will initiate a public comment period.
SVP – Corporate Affairs
Adam leads The Cannabis Company’s (Columbia Care) public affairs and market growth opportunities. Adam is involved in leading numerous industry efforts including co-chairing the Coalition for Cannabis Scheduling Reform and is the Policy Chair of the United States Cannabis Council.
Before joining the cannabis industry, Adam advised several high regulatory-opportunity startups, and was a longtime political strategist, serving as Senior Advisor to both Governor O’Malley of Maryland and the Democratic Governors Association. Amongst others, he worked for Governor Tim Kaine and Senator Hillary Clinton and served as a National Finance Committee Member of Obama/Biden 2012. He is a graduate of Colorado State University and earned his MBA from The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.
Vice President for External Affairs
and Deputy General Counsel
Bryan Barash is Dutchie’s Vice President for External Affairs and Deputy General Counsel, responsible for overseeing compliance, public affairs, social equity, and other legal functions at Dutchie.
Bryan also serves as the Secretary of the United States Cannabis Council and Co-Chair of the Coalition for Cannabis Scheduling Reform.
Prior to his two years at Dutchie, Bryan spent the previous eight years as General Counsel to Massachusetts State Senate President Harriette Chandler after receiving his law degree from Boston College.
Bryan lives in Beverly, Massachusetts with his wife Claudia, son Elias, and their two dachshunds.
Frequently Asked Questions
- How likely is it that the DEA will refuse to reschedule marijuana?
- Why not hold out for descheduling (removing marijuana from the Controlled Substances List)?
- Will this mean that the final goal of legalization (descheduling) will be harder to achieve?
- If this change were to happen, what would happen to the state-regulated marijuana industry?
- How would this change FDA’s regulatory authority over marijuana? Wouldn’t descheduling be better?
- How would rescheduling impact interstate trade?
- What is FDA’s interest in regulating cannabis?
- What enforcement powers does the FDA have?
- Following re-scheduling, will state-regulated cannabis companies face FDA regulation similar to pharmaceutical companies?
- Would it be easier to get a research license from the FDA?
- Why is the Health and Human Services (HHS) recommendation to move marijuana to Schedule III significant?
- What role does the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) play in this process?
- Will the Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs (our treaty through the UN), prevent the US from making this change, or ultimately legalizing marijuana in the US?
- How can individuals and businesses stay updated on developments related to marijuana rescheduling?
Members of the coalition include:
- Acreage Holdings
- American Trade Association for Cannabis & Hemp (ATACH)
- Asian Americans for Cannabis Education
- Bada Bloom
- The Bronx Community Foundation
- Columbia Care
- Cresco Labs
- Good Day Farm
- Green Thumb Industries
- Hemp for Victory
- Hero Grown
- Holistic Solutions
- Housing Works
- Justus Foundation
- Kush Culture Industries
- Major Bloom
- Majority Minority Group
- Marcu Enterprises
- Marijuana Policy Project
- National Cannabis Roundtable
- National Hispanic Cannabis Council
- Native Roots Dispensary
- New York CAURD Coalition
- New York for Social and Economic Equity
- Perkins Coie LLP
- Physicians Research Center, LLC
- PPP Dispensary
- Quality Roots
- Queen City Remedies
- Realm of Caring
- Scotts Miracle-Gro
- Simply Pure Trenton
- Tuatara Capital
- Union Square Travel Agency
- US Cannabis Council
- Valley Wellness
- Verano Holdings
- Vicente LLP
- The Weldon Project
Join The Coalition
We continue to partner with a broad range of companies, organizations and elected officials to support cannabis scheduling reform. If you are interested in learning more, please get in touch with us at email@example.com.