Addiction Policy Update – January 2020

January 30, 2020  | 

Addiction Policy Update – January 2020




On Thursday the 16th, the Senate passed legislation to extend the DEA’s emergency order that allows the government to classify all new fentanyl-like substances as Schedule I – the government’s standard for the most dangerous and stringently-regulated type of drug. The extension on this order would be temporary for the next 15 months, and the House Energy and Commerce Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee emphasized the need for continuing the extension during a recent hearing.



On Tuesday the 14th, the House Energy and Commerce Committee, Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations held a hearing entitled, “A Public Health Emergency: State Efforts to Curb the Opioid Crisis.” The hearing examined state efforts and successes in addressing the opioid epidemic, as well as opportunities for future federal support. Committee leaders discussed the need for flexibility in federal funds and evolving threats. During the hearing, the Committee announced it sent bipartisan letters to the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and Health and Human Services (HHS) asking what the administration is doing to address the emergence of methamphetamine and polysubstance use.

More information can be found here.


On Wednesday the 15th, the Subcommittee on Health of the Committee on Energy and Commerce held a hearing entitled, “Cannabis Policies for the New Decade.” Committee members and administration officials discussed six bills proposing various policy changes such as rescheduling or de-scheduling marijuana, providing a safe harbor for patients and veterans who use medical marijuana, and streamlining cannabis research processes.

More information can be found here.



Holly Strain and Carol McDaid of Capitol Decisions have generously provided the information used for this Policy Update.




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