December 7, 2023

The STATES Act Represents a Sea Change in Federal Cannabis Policy


WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Representatives Dave Joyce (OH-14), Lori Chavez-DeRemer (OR-05), Brian Mast (FL-21), Earl Blumenauer (OR-03), and Troy Carter (LA-02) introduced the Strengthening the Tenth Amendment Through Entrusting States (STATES) Act. This well-crafted legislation smartly aligns federal policy with state policy to ensure legal cannabis markets are safer. This bill elegantly aids states that have decided to legalize medicinal and adult-use cannabis while protecting states that have decided to keep cannabis prohibited.

CPEAR executive director, Andrew Freedman, released the following statement:  

“The STATES Act does what every federal bill should do –help all 50 states succeed in the policies they choose,” said Freedman. “Whether you are pro-legalization or anti-legalization, we can all acknowledge the current federal posture of having its head in the sand is not working. This bill will create the commonsense guardrails that will protect our youth, protect our roads, battle against addiction and psychosis, and keep cannabis out of communities that do not want it.

“This legislation does not aim to open new cannabis markets. Instead, it simply aligns federal policy with state policy so that existing cannabis markets are safer, and federal efforts can be focused on keeping cannabis out of states where it remains illegal. CPEAR thanks Rep. Dave Joyce for his commitment to getting cannabis reform right and looks forward to working with him as he champions this bill in Congress.”

The STATES Act aims to:

  • Create a rational marketplace where licensed operators can access capital and interstate commerce necessary to beat out the illicit markets
  • Solve issues around banking, access, and 280E taxes
  • Provide state law enforcement with the tools they need to appropriately enforce their state’s desired laws
  • Allow research on the actual cannabis people are using in real-time


About the Coalition for Cannabis Policy, Education, and Regulation 

A 501(c)(4) non-profit organization, the Coalition for Cannabis Policy, Education, and Regulation (CPEAR) works to advance comprehensive policy solutions for cannabis legalization and regulation. The Coalition strives to be a trusted, science-driven resource for lawmakers and the larger stakeholder community, developing responsible policies that provide access to cannabis while protecting consumers and patients, barring underage use, upholding public health and safety, and promoting social equity. Comprised of a diverse group of stakeholders, the Coalition brings unique perspectives to the table to thoughtfully address what a national, legal cannabis industry should look like. To learn more, visit and follow us on Twitter.