REP. LIEU LEADS LETTER TO GAO QUESTIONING THE EFFECTIVENESS OF DEA’S CANNABIS ERADICATION PROGRAM

October 26, 2016
Press Release

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Washington - Yesterday, Congressman Ted W. Lieu (D | Los Angeles County) joined Representatives Gerald E. Connolly (D-VA), Jared Polis (D-CO), and Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA) in leading a letter sent to the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) regarding the Drug and Enforcement Administrations (DEA) Domestic Cannabis Eradication/Suppression Program (DCE/SP). The letter, signed by eight bipartisan Members of Congress, requests that the GAO produce a report on the cost effectiveness of the DEA’s cannabis eradication program after it was reported that several states receiving DCE/SP funds failed to eradicate many marijuana plants, resulting in a waste of taxpayer money.

In the letter, Mr. Lieu and the seven other Members of Congress write:

“In an October 7 analysis of federal documents obtained through the Freedom of Information Act, the Washington Post reported that several states that received DCE/SP funds failed to eradicate many marijuana plants, if any.  The state of Utah, for instance, received $73,000 in taxpayer money  but did not find a single marijuana plant to eradicate.”

“While the DEA’s Cannabis Eradication/Suppression Program has been in effect nationwide for three decades, the recent trend in state laws to legalize and decriminalize the production, distribution or consumption of marijuana calls into question the necessity of such a program.”

“Over half the states have now legalized marijuana in some form, yet the DEA continues to funnel millions of tax dollars every year into marijuana eradication. As Congress evaluates how to allocate government funds over the next fiscal year, it is critical that we have an accurate picture of what the DEA’s DCE/SP funds are being spent on, where, and how effectively.”  

THE FULL TEXT OF THE LETTER CAN BE FOUND HERE

###