DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA: Colorado is poised to become a leading maker of hemp after the Senate passed a bill this week to remove certain hurdles and allow universities to produce and cultivate the plant for agricultural and research purposes.
The language authored by Colorado Democratic Rep. Jared Polis was included in the Farm Bill that has already passed the House, and is now headed to the White House where President Barack Obama is expected to sign it into law.
“This will invigorate our thriving market for this historic and versatile crop, creating jobs in industries from agriculture to food service,” Polis said in a statement after the measure cleared the last legislative hurdle in the Senate on Tuesday.
Polis actually voted against the Farm Bill that contained his hemp language, citing other measures included in the legislative package he opposed such as the Christmas tree tax, a $30 million catfish inspection program, and sugar price supports.
Polis’ amendment bars the federal government from enforcing its laws against hemp in states where producing and cultivating the plant is legal. It would override the Controlled Substances Act of 1970 and the Safe and Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act of 1994, among other laws.