This article first appeared on HempToday.
The new 2018 Farm Bill in the United States, which would empower states to guide hemp programs and expand them, is supposedly “fast-tracked,” but supporters are unsure if the measure would be considered by the United States’ upper congressional body anytime soon.
Senator Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, who recently presented the bill, said this week that it was uncertain when – or even if – the Senate will vote on it.
While the Act skipped the Senate’s committee procedure through a procedural maneuver and is now “on the Senate calendar,” McConnell’s office cautioned that a hearing is not guaranteed.
In theory, the law would allow hemp to be sold as an agricultural commodity, enabling it to be removed from the federal narcotic list. Hemp cultivation is currently overseen by federal authorities in the United States. The new Act would completely hand over the programs to the states.
Meanwhile, US President Donald Trump has stated that his government will ease sanctions against states that have legalized marijuana, which includes hemp. Following meetings with hemp-state activists, Trump made the decision, undermining Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ January policy pronouncement, which reduced federal enforcement of marijuana laws and gave federal prosecutors broad discretion in prosecuting criminal cases.
Farm Bill in the United States