South Dakota Ag Committee Gives First Approval of Industrial Hemp

by Patrick Callahan, South Dakota Broadcasters Association

PIERRE, S.D. (SDBA) – A bill to legalized the growth and transportation of hemp in South Dakota cleared the House Ag and Natural Resources committee this morning in Pierre.

House Bill 1008 was heavily amended by the Governor’s Office but ultimately passed on an 11 yes, 2 excused vote sending the bill to the full House for debate.

House Majority Leader Lee Qualm says he feels ‘really good’ about the current bill but adds that there’s still work to be done.

Governor Kristi Noem vetoed a similar bill last year saying that hemp production in South Dakota was a ‘gateway’ to legalizing marijuana. She agreed to work with lawmakers this year provided that the bill include what she referred to as her “Four Guardrails.”

HB100B covered three of the four guardrails but conspicuously absent was the ‘funding’ component. HB1008B requires roughly $3.5 million in one time and on going monies but does not identify where that funding will come from.

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