(SD)-Noem Promises To Veto Any Leaglized Hemp Bill
PIERRE, S.D. (AP) - South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem is promising to again veto a bill legalizing industrial hemp in the if it's introduced at next year's Legislature.
Hemp, a no-buzz cousin of marijuana, was included in last year's federal farm bill, but it must be legalized by a state before its growers can start cultivation and federal law enforcement still considers it to still be as illegal as marijuana.
Noem wrote why she won't support legalizing hemp in a commentary in the Wall Street Journal Monday night, saying she would be "happy" to introduce a new cash crop in South Dakota, but she said hemp isn't it.
The Republican governor, who comes from a farming and ranching family, says she will continue to oppose legalizing industrial hemp until law enforcement can differentiate between hemp and marijuana.
Last session, Noem vetoed an industrial hemp bill and the Legislature failed to override it, but legislative leaders have begun studying hemp ahead of next year's session.
The Nebraska and Wyoming legislatures this year both passed bills legalizing industrial hemp with Republicans Pete Ricketts and Mark Gordon signing those bills into law.
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