August 30,2023

Wyden Statement on HHS Recommendation to Classify Cannabis as Schedule III Controlled Substance

Washington, D.C. – Senate Finance Committee Chairman Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) issued the following statement after reports that the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) formally recommended that the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) move marijuana from Schedule I to Schedule III under the Controlled Substances Act:

“Ultimately, I believe that cannabis should be descheduled with strong federal regulations put in place to protect public health and safety – that’s why I introduced the Cannabis Administration And Opportunity Act with Leader Schumer and Senator Booker. However, the recommendation of HHS to reschedule cannabis as a Schedule III drug is not inconsequential. If HHS’s recommendation is ultimately implemented, it will be a historic step for a nation whose cannabis policies have been out of touch with reality. At long last, barriers to much-needed research will be lifted and the inequitable 280E tax provision thrown in the trash can so that state legal cannabis businesses will no longer be treated like criminals and can deduct their business expenses just like any other small business.

“Progress cannot stop here. The administration and my colleagues in Congress must do more to bring America’s cannabis policy into the 21st century, catch up with the states, and help undo the decades of harm caused by the failed War on Drugs.”


Press Contact: Nicole L'Esperance