US Conference of Mayors Unanimously Pass Resolution Calling for the Feds to Respect Local Marijuana Laws

  • by Erik Altieri, NORML Executive Director June 24, 2013

    The US Conference of Mayors unanimously approved a resolution this morning that calls on the federal government to respect local marijuana laws. Resolution No. 32 “reaffirms the USCM’s support of fair and effective criminal justice and drug policies, states that federal laws, including the Controlled Substance Act, should be amended to explicitly allow states to set their own marijuana policies without federal interference; and that until such time as federal law is changed, The United States Conference of Mayors urges the President of the United States to reexamine the priorities of federal agencies to prevent the expenditure of resources on actions that undermine the duly enacted marijuana laws of states.”

    The resolution was introduced with 18 co-sponsors, including Bob Filner of San Diego, Mike McGinn of (Seattle), Carolyn Goodman (Las Vegas), Jean Quan (Oakland), Steve Hogan (Aurora), Marilyn Strickland of (Tacoma), Kitty Piercy of (Eugene), and William Euille of (Alexandria). You can read the full text of the resolution here.

    “In November, voters in my city and state strongly approved a ballot measure to legalize, tax and regulate marijuana,” said co-sponsor Aurora Mayor Steve Hogan. “The bipartisan resolution we passed today simply asks the federal government to give us time to implement these new policies properly and without interference. Cities and states across the country are enacting forward-thinking reforms to failed marijuana prohibition policies, and for the federal government to stand in the way is wasteful and contrary to the wishes of the American people.”

    We would like to thank all of you who took action on this effort and joined NORML and our allies at the Marijuana Majority (who coordinated this action). Speaking on the success of the resolution, Tom Angell of the Marijuana Majority stated, “It’s time for President Obama to enact the changes he promised during the 2008 campaign. A strong and growing majority of Americans want states to be able to set their own marijuana laws without federal harassment. Local officials are enacting policies that serve to protect the health and safety of their communities better than the failed policy of prohibition has, and they deserve the respect they are asking for from the Obama administration.”

    “NORML applauds the US Conference of Mayors for unanimously approving this measure that calls for a federal policy on marijuana that is in line with the desires of the majority of American citizens. Over 50% of Americans support legalizing and regulating marijuana in a manner similar to alcohol and even more believe the federal government should leave decisions related to marijuana to states and their municipalities. This resolution calls for a rational policy that would empower local and state governments to set marijuana laws that work for them, without fear of federal incursion,” stated NORML Communications Director Erik Altieri, “It is encouraging to see that these mayors, many of whom are on the ascendancy of their political careers, engage this important issue directly. Even while many of our elected officials working in Washington, DC continue to drag their feet on the topic of reform, the unanimous passing of this resolution shows that many others working their way up from the local level are no longer willing to sit idle and that they will take action to put our country on the right side of history when it comes to marijuana.”

    42 responses to “US Conference of Mayors Unanimously Pass Resolution Calling for the Feds to Respect Local Marijuana Laws”

    1. tina cenname says:

      Please please change lawmakers to understand the need us seniors & others in pain & anxiety who need medical marijuana to help. We do not or cannot take pain pills.only asking for herb that god made naturally. Ohio please hear this !!!

    2. phrtao says:

      The Federal government has fewer and fewer friends. Those who are powerful and want (or accept) change are letting groups like the USCM blaze a trail. It is part of them saving face after all the years of lies they need a graceful way to do an about turn on this subject. I think the Federal government and Obama know prohibition is all but dead that is why they have gone quiet on the subject

    3. Miles says:

      Even if the Feds finally wise up and realize the futility of marijuana prohibition, giving the states the right to respect local marijuana laws is still not a good thing. I live in VA and I’m pretty sure the politicians here would still want to continue their policy of locking people up. It really needs to be made legal at the national level before I will consider this country to be at least semi-free again!

      Noone should be locked up for any marijuana violation in my opinion. It doesn’t matter if they are using or selling. The only reason the black market exists is because of stupid racist predjudicial laws.

    4. Doree Rizzo says:

      I sincerely hope Mr. Rusty Bailey, the Mayor of Riverside, Ca was one of those unanimous votes! The city has arrogantly shut down every dispensary in the city and recently adopted an ordinance prohibiting Mobil delivery services to patients. They do not care about the patients right to obtain medicine of their choice…they have spent millions of dollars fighting MMJ that is legal in the state of California … They will soon be presented with the will of their citizens!

    5. Anonymous says:

      stop paying taxes and the government will go home..they don’t work for free

    6. Elaine says:

      @Anonymous – I wish I could stop paying taxes without ending up in a taxpayer funded prison! God knows that once they get our money they don’t spend it the way we want them to…

    7. Fireweed says:

      Miles, the federal government can’t tell a state to make something legal/illegal. The us gov can only lift or enact laws pertaining to the us as a whole. Confusing yes, there is often conflict between federal prohibition and state leniency while if a state or county wants to make something illegal (such as dry counties) they get no argument. You have to vote the bastards out of office in your area to get change locally.

    8. Fireweed says:

      It seems like we should have reached that tipping point by now, should only be a matter of time before the floodgates open.

    9. Dave K, Phoenix, AZ says:

      Thank you to the mayors for seeing the wisdom of what has become a genuine “Grassroots” approach. It makes no sense for the federal government to interfere with what always should have been a state’s rights matter.

    10. RUT says:

      It seams localized politicians have better vision on this issue than washington politicians. I THINK THE GOVERNMENT HAS NOT BEEN HONEST WITH US ON MARIJUANA. IT PURPOSELY DISALLOWED RESEARCH SO THEIR POSITION OF A CLASS ONE SUBSTANCE COULD NOT BE CHALLENGED. It is hard to watch feet being dragged on the decriminalization of marijuana. I understand it will take time to work out a system to retail POT. But the other states should follow suite in not jailing people for can-ibis even if they do not want to legalize pot in their state.