Ind. House Unanimously Passes Industrial Hemp Legalization Bill
By Mike Perleberg
(Indianapolis, Ind.) – A bill to legalize industrial hemp in Indiana has unanimously passed the House.
Hemp is a plant closely resembling marijuana, however, it does not contain cut a small amount of THC, the chemical that gives marijuana smokers a high. It can be used to make a variety of commercial and industrial products including rope, clothes, food, paper, textiles, plastics, insulation and biofuel.
Currently, only Purdue University is authorized to conduct research on hemp. House Bill 1137 would allow farmers in the state to grow hemp as a crop, if the federal government ever issues the necessary permissions and waivers.
State-licensed growers and handlers would only be permitted to use certified hemp seeds. The state seed commissioner would regulate and monitor the crop.
Southeastern Indiana State Representative Randy Frye (R-Greensburg) believes hemp would be a successful crop in the state. He thinks small farms could use hemp to replace the revenue lost with the decline of tobacco.
“From the testimony we’ve heard, Kentucky already has done so and they’ve been having success. We need to monitor that,” said Frye.
House Bill 1137 passed on a 90-0 vote on Wednesday. The legislation now heads across the hall to the State Senate, where it may face a tougher road to passage.
LISTEN TO EAGLE COUNTRY 99.3’S INTERVIEW WITH STATE REP. RANDY FRYE IN THE AUDIO PLAYER BELOW.
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