Under a new congressional plan, marijuana TV advertisements might be shielded from the FCC.

According to a new bill proposed by the U.S. House Appropriations Committee, marijuana businesses may soon be able to air television commercials without worrying about federal interference.

The 2023 Financial Services and General Government Appropriations Bill recently received a preliminary approval from a House committee, according to MediaPost. This massive spending bill includes provisions that would shield broadcasters from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in states that have legalized marijuana.

Because marijuana is still a Schedule 1 restricted substance, the FCC has the authority to cancel the broadcasting licenses of TV and radio stations that air cannabis advertisements.

Because of this, there haven’t been as many cannabis advertisements on television as there have been in alternative weekly print publications, magazines, billboards, and other forms of media.
The proposed appropriations bill forbids the FCC from using “any of the funds appropriated to the agency for the fiscal year that begins Oct. 1 to deny broadcasters a license renewal or station sale application, or require an early license renewal application to be filed,” according to MediaPost. This would prevent the FCC from taking action against broadcasters for running marijuana advertisements in states where the plant has been legalized.

However, the funding bill still needs to be approved by the full House and Senate, and the proposal doesn’t address other federal restrictions on drug promotion contained in the Controlled Substances Act.

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