Materials on 2014 Drug Guidelines Amendment

Reducing the Drug Quantity Table by Two Levels

View the webcast (recorded August 2014) addressing the Commission's vote on retroactivity:

In April 2014, the United States Sentencing Commission voted unanimously to reduce sentencing guidelines for most federal drug trafficking offenders. In July 2014, the Commission voted, again unanimously, to make this sentencing reduction retroactive (effective on November 1, 2014). Courts can consider motions for retroactive sentence reductions beginning on November 1, 2014, but no prisoners may be released based on this reduction prior to November 1, 2015.

Amendment Language

What did this amendment do?

The amendment reduced the sentencing levels associated with drug quantity in the advisory United States Sentencing Guidelines. Going forward, this change will reduce penalties by an average of 11 months for 70% of drug trafficking offenders. More than 40,000 currently imprisoned offenders could be eligible to have their sentences retroactively reduced by an average of 25 months. They would still serve an average of 108 months.


FAQs and Training Materials

The Commission's FAQ document answers common questions received from the public regarding the 2014 drug guidelines amendment. The legal primer addresses some common procedural questions that have arisen in the context of motions for sentence reductions under 18 U.S.C. § 3582(c)(2) and retroactive guideline amendments.

View the webcast (recorded October 2014) discussing application of this amendment:


Materials from Public Meetings and Hearings

Public Meeting to Vote on Retroactivity (July 18, 2014)

The Commission voted unanimously at this public meeting to apply a reduction in the sentencing guideline levels applicable to most federal drug trafficking offenders retroactively, meaning that many offenders currently in prison could be eligible for reduced sentences beginning November 2015.

Public Hearing on Retroactivity (June 10, 2014)

The Commission gathered testimony from invited witnesses concerning whether the Commission should designate as retroactive the amendment reducing guideline levels for most drug offenses.

Public Meeting to Vote on 2014 Amendments (April 10, 2014)

The Commission voted at this public meeting to reduce the sentencing guideline levels applicable to most federal drug trafficking offenders.

Public Hearing on Proposed 2014 Amendments (March 13, 2014)

The purpose of this public hearing was for the Commission to receive testimony from invited witnesses on proposed amendments to the federal sentencing guidelines.

Public Meeting on Proposed 2014 Amendments (January 9, 2014)

At this public meeting, staff gave a data presentation to inform public comment on proposed amendments to the drug trafficking guideline.

Watch the data presentation on drug trafficking offenses:

Public Meeting on Proposed Priorities (August 15, 2013)

The Commission met to select priorities for the 2013-14 amendment cycle.


Additional Related Materials

Federal Register Notices

Research on Retroactivity

Court Related Materials on Retroactivity

Other Speeches, Remarks, and Press Releases