Bill Would Change Returning Citizen Status for D.C. Cannabis Industry

A new bill being introduced in D.C.would make it possible for returning citizens, those with a felony or misdemeanor cannabis offenses, to work in the cannabis industry. It was introduced last week and would repeal the part of the Legalization of Marijuana for Medical Treatment Initiative of 1999 that currently keeps them from working. 

“When the District first enacted this prohibition, it was in part out of concern that allowing returning citizens to participate might invite federal intervention. These concerns were understandable at the time, but the expansion of this industry across the country and changing perceptions of the use of medical cannabis has made that concern obsolete,” White said in an emailed statement. “The District cannot continue to bar returning citizens from an industry that offers good paying local jobs.”

What The Bill Means

If this bill passes, it would create a program that would allow returning citizens to get into the industry, as well as provide incentives for residents applying for licenses and those who wanted to start dispensaries, cultivation centers, or testing labs in cases where returning citizens are at least 50 percent of the ownership. It was introduced by At-Large Councilmember David Grosso, Ward 7’s Vincent

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