(SD)-Noem Still Has Concerns Over Hemp Bill
PIERRE, S.D. (AP) - South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem says a bill awaiting final action by the state Senate to legalize industrial hemp still "gravely concerns" her, but she stops short of threatening a veto if it passes.
Last year's federal farm bill legalized commercial production of hemp, but most states must take similar action to implement the federal change.
Hemp is a non-psychoactive cousin of marijuana and Noem's concerned because the plants look alike and drug detection dogs flag hemp just like marijuana. The Republican governor said Friday she's worried the bill would make enforcement difficult.
She's emphasized ever since the bill was introduced that she's not oppose to legalizing hemp, she's just against it now because federal guidelines aren't expected until fall - giving the state more time to craft workable rules and regulations based on those federal guidelines.
Noem also says there's an amendment to the bill that could still be proposed in the Senate that would win her support for the measure but she declines to describe what it is.
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