Arizona Tribes and Marijuana

Attorney General Jeff Sessions rescinded all Justice Department marijuana policies from the Obama-era on Jan 4, 2018. Change is coming and the following information will be updated as it happens.

The U.S. Justice Department issued a policy in 2014 regarding marijuana on tribal lands. It allows federally-recognized tribes in states with legalized marijuana to decide their own policies and self-regulate the growing and sales of marijuana on their reservations.

Medical Marijuana is Legal in Arizona

The voters of Arizona approved Proposition 203 in 2010 legalizing the medical use of marijuana. Recreational marijuana remains illegal. Proposition 205 in November 2016 attempted to legalize recreational use but was defeated with 48.7% of the vote.

Arizona's Federally-Recognized Tribes

The DOJ marijuana policy on tribal reservations applies to these Arizona tribes. Each is federally recognized as sovereign by the Bureau of Indian Affairs in the U.S. Interior Department.

  • Ak-Chin Indian Community of the Maricopa (Ak Chin) Indian Reservation, Arizona
  • Cocopah Tribe of Arizona
  • Colorado River Indian Tribes of the Colorado Indian Reservation, Arizona and California
  • Fort McDowell Yavapai Nation, Arizona
  • Gila River Indian Community of the Gila River Indian Reservation, Arizona
  • Havasupai Tribe of the Havasupai Reservation, Arizona
  • Hopi Tribe of Arizona
  • Hualapai Indian Tribe of the Hualapai Indian Reservation, Arizona
  • Kaibab Band of Paiute Indians of the Kaibab Indian Reservation, Arizona
  • Navajo Nation, Arizona, New Mexico & Utah
  • Pascua Yaqui Tribe of Arizona
  • Quechan Tribe of the Fort Yuma Indian Reservation, California & Arizona
  • Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community of the Salt River Reservation, Arizona
  • San Carlos Apache Tribe of the San Carlos Reservation, Arizona
  • San Juan Southern Paiute Tribe of Arizona
  • Tohono O'odham Nation of Arizona
  • Tonto Apache Tribe of Arizona
  • White Mountain Apache Tribe of the Fort Apache Reservation, Arizona
  • Yavapai-Apache Nation of the Camp Verde Indian Reservation, Arizona
  • Yavapai-Prescott Indian Tribe

For a list of all Arizona tribes and their locations, see our page about Arizona Tribes.

Most tribes are considering the potential opportunites of the marijuana industry. The Navajo Nation is moving towards production of medical marijuana and hemp. Hemp is the fiber of the cannabis plant used in making rope and course fabrics.

Cannabis Opportunities for Arizona Tribes

Navajo Nation Considering Cannabis and Industrial Hemp

July 1, 2017

The Navajo Nation Council Health, Education, and Human Services Committee voted unanimously 4-0 to allow the production of cannabis and hemp. The issue now passes to the Resources and Development Committee for review and approval. Final approval will be made by the Navajo Nation Council.