Kentucky to Move Forward With Hemp Regulations

The Kentucky Industrial Hemp Commission voted to move forward with writing regulations for a hemp farming permit program Thursday as Attorney General Jack Conway considers the impact of a U.S. Department of Justice memo on recreational marijuana.

The Kentucky Department of Agriculture will begin drafting new regulations on industrial hemp licensing after the Department of Justice issued a memo stating the agency would not prosecute against states that regulate and tax the sale of marijuana with some exceptions, such as restricting out-of-state sale of the drug and keeping revenue out of the hands of cartels and gangs.

Department of Agriculture officials see the memo as a green light for hemp farming in Kentucky after Senate Bill 50 passed the General Assembly earlier this year and established a regulatory framework for hemp cultivation.

“I’m confident that the regulations that are developed in Kentucky for the oversight of industrial hemp will be strongly enforced, and I’m confident that whatever regs are developed will pass muster,” said Luke Morgan, a contracted attorney with the Department of Agriculture.

Agriculture Commissioner James Comer and Republican U.S. Sen. Rand Paul will co-sign a letter to the Department of Justice letting the agency know of Kentucky’s plans to farm industrial hemp.

But Maj. Anthony Terry with Kentucky State Police, a member of the hemp commission, said the Department of Justice memo does not change federal and state laws regarding cannabis.

Allison Martin, Conway’s spokeswoman, said Conway is reviewing the memo and will issue an advisory letter on its effect in Kentucky within the next few weeks.

– Read the entire article at The State Journal.