A New California Law is About To Decriminalize Psychedelics — But Not All of Them
Senator Scott Wiener of California has reintroduced a bill that aims to decriminalize the possession, obtaining, transfer, and transportation of certain naturally occurring hallucinogenic substances, including psilocybin, DMT, ibogaine, and mescaline. The bill also specifies allowable amounts of these substances that adults can possess, including 2 grams of DMT, 15 grams of ibogaine, and 2 grams (or up to 4 ounces) of a plant or fungi containing psilocybin or psilocin.
Sen. Scott Wiener has introduced a new bill, SB 58, to decriminalize certain naturally occurring hallucinogenic substances in California. The bill follows a previous attempt by Wiener, SB 519, which did not pass due to the removal of the provision to decriminalize psychedelics in committee. Wiener has stated that the decriminalization of psychedelics is not controversial among the general public and that various cities in California and elsewhere have already passed ordinances advocating for decriminalization. The new bill has a range of supporters and will be considered for further action.
Selling psychedelics will still be illegal
Sen. Scott Wiener’s bill to decriminalize certain naturally occurring hallucinogenic substances in California does not permit the sale of these substances, and sets allowable amounts that effectively prohibit the retail cannabis and mushroom “gifting” model currently present in Washington, DC. While the bill allows for personal use and possession of these substances, selling them would remain illegal. In recent months, law enforcement agencies have cracked down on illegal mushroom retailers in the United States and Canada, as people have tried to push the boundaries of current decriminalization laws.
No LSD or MDMA.
The new bill contains two major differences from its predecessor: it removes LSD and MDMA from the list of impacted substances and focuses only on naturally-occurring entheogens. Wiener has expressed his desire to include LSD and MDMA in the bill but has chosen to prioritize the passage of the bill by focusing on non-synthetic substances first, with the intention of addressing synthetics at a later time.
In addition to removing LSD and MDMA and focusing on naturally occurring entheogens, SB 58, also removes the requirement for the state to conduct a study to explore subsequent policy reforms. The previous version of the bill, which was not passed, only required such a study and did not actually decriminalize psychedelics.