South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem dashed the hopes of hemp advocates this week when she vetoed a bill that would have created an industrial hemp program in the state.
The state’s House of Representatives attempted to override the veto, but were unable to get the votes necessary to do so.
One of the bill’s main sponsors, Rep. Oren Lesmeister, argued that the veto will only benefit neighboring states. “While our surrounding states will be glad to have less competition, we are letting our farmers down,” he said.
A recent poll found that 78 percent of Iowans want an expanded medical cannabis program. But so far, the state’s legislators have been out of sync with their constituents.
Currently, Iowa only allows CBD products to be sold through only five dispensaries in the state. And a short list of conditions qualify patients for access.
So, could 2019 be the year when all of that changes?
Three cannabis-related bills are progressing through the state’s legislature. One would reduce penalties for possession of small amounts of cannabis. The other two would expand the medical CBD program to make it more accessible and effective for patients.
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A video which showed Bolivar, Missouri law enforcement raiding the hospital room of a man with stage 4 cancer has gone viral.
A hospital security guard had told the police that the man was smoking marijuana in his room, but the search only turned up CBD oil.
CBD is completely legal under Missouri law. The state also has a medical cannabis program, which has not yet been fully implemented.
This week, the National Law Review explored whether the precarious legal status of cannabis businesses will impact their access to bankruptcy courts.
Even with the passage of the Farm Bill, the lack of clear guidance from the USDA and FDA means that it’s unclear whether companies that produce hemp-derived CBD products will be seen as “legal” in the eyes of the court. That could make it difficult for failing businesses to get bankruptcy relief.
Meanwhile, the USDA is planning to finalize hemp regulations in time for the 2020 farming season.
The Department held a webinar on Wednesday, in which they allowed stakeholders to make suggestions for the new regulations.
Growers, processors, advocates, and state agricultural departments stressed the need for standardized testing procedures across the country. Currently, differing state policies would pose challenges for transporting hemp across state lines.
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