North Dakota House Approves Industrial Hemp Farming Bill

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WRC Article on hemp: http://wearechange.org/home-is-where-the-hemp-is/

SOURCE: Tenth Amendment Center

The North Dakota state House approved a bill last week that would authorize the farming, production, and sale of industrial hemp in the state, effectively nullifying the federal prohibition on the same.

Introduced by Reps. David Monson (R-10) and Alan Fehr (R-36) along with Sen. Tom Campbell (R-19), House Bill 1436 (HB1436) not only sets up the framework to effectuate a commercial hemp farming program in the state, it expressly rejects any need for federal approval before growing hemp in the state. It reads, in part: “A license required by this section is not conditioned on or subject to review or approval by the United States drug enforcement agency.”

HB1436 passed through the state house successfully on Feb. 20 by a resounding 87-5 vote. The bill now moves on to the state Senate for further consideration.

Passage into law will ensure that North Dakota will join join five other states – Colorado, Oregon, South Carolina, Tennessee and Vermont – that have already passed similar measures. Farmers in SE Colorado started harvesting the plant in 2013, and farmers in Vermont began harvesting in 2014, effectively nullifying federal restrictions on such agricultural activities. On Feb. 2, the Oregon hemp industry officially opened for business and one week later, the first license went to a small non-profit group who hopes to plant 25 acres this spring. The Tennessee Agricultural department recently put out a call for licensing, signaling that hemp farming will start soon there too.

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