Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) on Wednesday introduced new legislation to decriminalize marijuana at the federal level by removing it completely from the list of scheduled substances under the 1970 Controlled Substances Act.
The Marijuana Freedom and Opportunity Act allows states to decide how to handle marijuana possession, while preserving the federal government’s ability to prevent trafficking from where it would be legal to states where it is not, according to a statement from Schumer’s office.
“The time to decriminalize marijuana is now,” Schumer said, adding that it is “simply the right thing to do.”
The Hill added:
The legislation would also invest $500 million over the span of five years to the Department of Health and Human Services for medical marijuana research and understanding the effects of THC.
Under the bill, states would be allowed to seal or expunge individual marijuana possession records.
The bill is co-sponsored by Sens. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), Tim Kaine (D-Va.) and Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.).