Ag Hemp Measure Approved by Senate

  Ag Hemp Measure Approved by Senate

Posted by CN Staff on September 13, 2007 at 08:56:58 PT
By Ben Brown, The Daily Journal 
Source: Ukiah Daily Journal 

California -- Late Tuesday night, the California Senate passed a bill that would allow four counties, including Mendocino County, to participate in a pilot program to test the viability of growing industrial hemp in California.Assembly Bill 684, sponsored by Assemblyman Mark Leno (D-San Francisco) and Assemblyman Chuck DeVore (R-Irvine), would institute a five-year program to test the viability of growing industrial hemp in California with pilot programs in Mendocino, Imperial, Kings and Yolo counties.
The bill now goes to Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger for approval or veto. The bill is an amended version of one that passed both the Assembly and Senate in 2006, but was vetoed by Schwarzenegger. It has been amended to address his concerns."The bill is a response to the governor's detailed veto last year," said Patrick Goggin, legal counsel for Vote Hemp.It defines industrial hemp as a hemp plant containing less than three-tenths of 1 percent THC, the psychoactive chemical in marijuana. Crops will be sampled, and if the amount of THC exceeds 1 percent the crop will be destroyed. Mendocino County Agricultural Commissioner Dave Bengston said Mendocino County was likely chosen as one of the pilot counties because of its reputation for marijuana cultivation.Some of the critics of legalized hemp have said growing the plant would allow those growing marijuana to hide an illegal crop with a legal one.Bengston said any attempt to do that would meet with failure because the hemp would cross pollinate the marijuana and render it useless as a drug.Mendocino County Sheriff Tom Allman has said he does not expect to have a problem with the bill, should it be signed into law, because of the provisions it contains on allowable THC.More than 30 countries grow industrial hemp, some of which is exported to the United States. Increased sales of hemp products have increased hemp farming in Canada, where 48,000 acres of the plant were farmed in 2006, according to Vote Hemp. Industrial hemp can be made into numerous items, including food, clothing, paper, body-care products, bio-fuels and auto parts.According to Leno, passage of AB 684 would give California farmers access to a $270 million industry that is growing at the rate of $26 million a year. Source: Ukiah Daily Journal (CA)Author: Ben Brown, The Daily JournalPublished: September 13, 2007Copyright: 2007 Ukiah Daily JournalContact: udj pacific.netWebsite: Hemp Hemp Archives

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Comment #5 posted by whig on September 13, 2007 at 22:42:55 PT

Schwarzenegger. I misspelled his name below.
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Comment #4 posted by whig on September 13, 2007 at 22:42:15 PT

Does California have a pocket veto? If not then all Schwartzenegger has to do is concede and he doesn't have to sign it. If he vetoes after they addressed his detailed concerns last time he should have to explain himself.
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Comment #3 posted by FoM on September 13, 2007 at 11:06:29 PT

Dr Ganj 
It's good to see you. I don't think he will sign it but I hope he does.
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Comment #2 posted by FoM on September 13, 2007 at 10:57:34 PT

Supervisors Seek Report on Marijuana Value
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Comment #1 posted by Dr Ganj on September 13, 2007 at 10:50:55 PT

Another Veto
Arnold will simply veto this bill too.
It's really sad, as I thought he had the courage to stand up against the government.
Things will only change when states can experiment without federal intrusion. However, I think that is only wishful thinking, and we must look to more enlightened counties for that type of freedom.
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