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Hemp Bill Likely Headed To Study Committee

Flexform Technologies CEO Gregg Baumbaugh displays one of the automobile interior parts his company manufactures using hemp, at a committee hearing in early February.

Senate lawmakers want to take a big step back when it comes to opening up Indiana’s hemp industry.

Legislation overwhelmingly passed by the House would have allowed the state to establish a hemp growing pilot program. It’s similar to a program in Kentucky, which has established itself as a national leader in hemp. But the Senate made the bill a study committee proposal.

Senate President Pro Tem David Long (R-Fort Wayne) says that’s because the state isn’t set up for such a system.

“Our Department of Agriculture, for instance, is not really set up to regulate,” Long says.
“Kentucky, which is doing this, is. They have staff, they have people who can inspect.”

Long says the change shouldn’t impact bills to legalize cannabidiol, or CBD, which is derived from hemp.

“I think there’s apples and oranges. They are not connected in my eyes at all,” Long says.

CBD legalization measures have passed both chambers.

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