State legislators tell feds to keep hands off marijuana policy

State legislators said federal laws should be amended to allow states the power to create their own marijuana policies.

A resolution passed by the National Conference of State Legislatures told the federal government “to explicitly allow states to set their own marijuana and hemp policies without federal interference.”

The group said it recognizes that its members have differing views on marijuana legalization, but that each state should be allowed to decide its own cannabis laws rather than have them dictated by the federal government.

The resolution passed with a majority of votes from lawmakers at the conference, which was held in Seattle, according to the Huffington Post.

Karen O’Keefe, the director of state policies for the Marijuana Policy Project, said in a release the resolution is a “strong indication” that legislators are listening to constituents who support making adult-use marijuana legal, the Post reported.

While the federal government has time and again issued guidance effectively telling U.S. prosecutors to not go after businesses that are operating within state law, the U.S. Attorney’s office in northern California has continued proceedings against high-profile dispensaries.

In April, California lawmakers sent a letter to the attorney general asking for the prosecutions to stop, and even went so far as to file a bill that would bar the federal government from going after marijuana businesses, provided they are complying with state cannabis laws.