Congress Set to Approve Cannabis Ads on TV and Radio – Broadcast: Film, TV and Radio

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In a somewhat indirect move, Congress has advanced efforts to allow television and radio stations to begin accepting cannabis advertisements in states where it has been approved for medical and/or adult use. Specifically, the House Appropriations Committee advanced the Financial Services and General Government Appropriations invoice for fiscal year 2023, which includes provisions that would eliminate the ability of the Federal Communications Commission (the “FCC”) to take administrative action against broadcasters for accepting cannabis advertisements in states where they have been legalized. Please note that despite this recent development, businesses will still need to comply with local regulations regarding the marketing of cannabis.

What does this mean for the future of cannabis ads?

Although it’s too early to say for sure, it looks like Congress has started to pave the way for approving cannabis ads. The appropriation bill has yet to be approved by the entire House of Representatives and Senate. According to recent news articleNational Association of Broadcasters spokesman Alex Siciliano is hopeful: “As the vast majority of states have legalized cannabis in one form or another, today marks a long overdue step to allow finally broadcasters to receive equal treatment regarding cannabis advertising that other forms of media have had for years.”

another news article reports that the proposed federal spending bill, which would apparently allow broadcasters to accept and air cannabis ads, would prevent the FCC from penalizing broadcasters for airing cannabis ads in states where it is legal . Specifically, under the budget bill, the FCC would not be allowed to use money to deny a license renewal or station sale application as punishment for airing ads about cannabis or related products. to cannabis.

What happens next?

This new bill, if passed, would allow broadcasters to profit from an industry estimated to be worth $18.4 billion in the United States this year. Please note, however, that media outlets not governed by FCC rules and regulations are currently free to accept cannabis advertisements.

Various state broadcast associations have worked together to create the Safe Advertising Coalition (the “SAC”), a group that lobbies for clear federal protection for broadcasters to run cannabis advertisements. The SAC applauded the House Appropriation Committee’s approval of the bill and is working to secure full congressional approval. If passed, the spending bill will come into effect on October 1, 2022 and expire after one year.

There appears to be great confidence in the broadcast industry that approval of the bill would allow cannabis commercials on radio and television in states that have legalized marijuana. Businesses will certainly need to consult with an experienced marketing attorney to ensure that their cannabis advertisements comply with applicable state and federal laws and regulations.

Recent blog posts:

Cannabis Council Approves New York Marijuana Marketing Regulations

New regulations on marijuana advertising in New York

Let’s get down to business: a guide to marijuana marketing

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide on the subject. Specialist advice should be sought regarding your particular situation.

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