By Steve Elliott
U.S. Rep. Ted Lieu (D-California) is backing legislation to end funding for the Drug Enforcement Administration's wasteful marijuana eradication program.
“This is a ridiculous waste of precious federal resources, especially when multiple states and jurisdictions have already legalized marijuana,” Lieu said in a statement on Wednesday, reports Fox News. “It is time for the federal government to stop making marijuana use or possession a federal crime.”
Lieu's proposed amendment to a 2016 fiscal spending bill would cut in half the DEA's $18 million budget for eradicating cannabis grows, according to the report.
The $9 million in savings would fund domestic and sexual abuse support programs for children, reports Mark Hensch at The Hill.
Rep. Lieu on Wednesday said he intends to completely end the DEA's marijuana eradication program by fiscal 2017.
"Next year, I will bring another amendment to eliminate the program completely," he said.
Lieu called the program wasteful, given growing support for cannabis legalization nationwide.
Under the eradication program, DEA provides your tax dollars to state and local law enforcement agencies to confiscate and destroy growing marijuana plants. The program goes after both outdoor and indoor operations.