Connecticut Legalizes Recreational Marijuana, With Sales Aimed for 2022
From the New York Times:
After years of failed attempts, Connecticut legalized recreational marijuana on Tuesday, laying the groundwork to direct cannabis revenue into communities of color that have long been targeted by policies criminalizing the drug.
Gov. Ned Lamont, a Democrat, signed a bill to legalize the use and cultivation of recreational cannabis and expunge thousands of past convictions for possession, after both houses of the state legislature passed the bill last week.
With his signature, Connecticut became the 19th state to legalize recreational marijuana and the fifth to do so this year after New Mexico, New York, Virginia and New Jersey.
Connecticut Lawmakers Delay Marijuana Legalization Vote To Special Session
With just hours left to go in Connecticut’s regular legislative session, House lawmakers on Wednesday decided to delay a planned vote on legalizing marijuana in the state. The proposal, which narrowly passed the Senate on Tuesday, will be taken up again during a special session by the end of the month.
Earlier in the day, House Speaker Matt Ritter (D) had said the chamber could still take up the legislation before the midnight deadline on the current session, but left open the possibility it might not happen.
“We will be voting in the next week on that bill,” he said during a press briefing Wednesday morning. “Could be today, could be tomorrow, could be Friday, could be Saturday, could be Sunday—we will be getting that bill passed.”
New Connecticut Marijuana Legalization Bill Released, With Votes Expected This Week
Connecticut legislative leaders introduced a sweeping new marijuana legalization bill late on Saturday, a day after announcing they’d reached a deal with the governor. A vote on the 297-page measure is expected within days, ahead of a mid-week legislative deadline.
The new proposal includes significant concessions to social equity advocates, who’ve criticized the legalization plan introduced by Gov. Ned Lamont (D) earlier this year as well as details of floated proposals that emerged during the negotiations. The changes are likely to curry favor among at least some progressive Democrats in the legislature, who previously signaled they might oppose the policy change.
House Majority Leader Jason Rojas (D) and Speaker Matt Ritter (D) have been negotiating with Lamont’s office for weeks on the compromise bill. They finally said on Friday morning that they had secured a “pencils down” agreement, and on Saturday promised the bill’s language would be public by the end of the day. It posted to the state’s legislative website late in the evening as Senate Bill 1118, sponsored by Ritter and Senate President Martin Looney (D).
2021 World Ag Expo
USDA Final Rule on hemp is out
It’s not perfect but they did address the harvest window (30 days), sampling/testing, remediation options, negligence threshold...
So you want to be a regenerative farmer?
Doug Fine shares his knowledge on being a Hemp Farmer
Bipartisan legislation providing legal clarity in the cannabidiol (CBD) product marketplace
The four leading dietary supplement industry associations applaud Representative Kurt Schrader (D-OR) and Representative Morgan Griffith (R-VA), for introducing bipartisan legislation that would protect public health by providing legal clarity in the cannabidiol (CBD) product marketplace. The Hemp and Hemp derived CBD Consumer Protection and Market Stabilization Act of 2020 directs the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to use its authority and resources to set a clear regulatory framework for hemp and hemp derived CBD and assure consumer protection.
Local hemp advocate, Scott Morris, has passed
We’re sad to report the passing of Scott Morris - a CHIA founding member who was owner of CT BioLogic - and a hemp advocate/wholesaler/extractor from Farmington CT. Sending our deepest sympathy and condolences to Sharon and the Morris family....
Economic Injury Disaster Loans from the SBA for farmers
Today, the SBA re-opened the EIDL (Economic Injury Disaster Loan) Relief Program but only for farmer applicants. This relief program consists of two components: the EIDL loan and the EIDL advance. Farmers may apply for a EIDL loan that requires repayment and/or an EIDL advance that does not require repayment.
The program is intended to assist farms facing a temporary loss of revenue because of coronavirus. Both types of funds may be used to cover paid sick leave, payroll costs, material purchases and fixed expenses such as rent or other financial obligations. The funds should not be used for physical repairs, expansions, bonuses or refinancing long-term debt.
Farmers may apply for up to $10,000 for an EIDL advance that does not have to be repaid but any funds borrowed beyond $10,000 will need to be repaid.
The funds may be used to cover paid sick leave, payroll costs, material purchases and fixed expenses such as rent or other financial obligations. The funds should not be used for physical repairs, expansions, bonuses or refinancing long-term debt.
Eligible farms must have 500 or fewer employees. The loan interest rate is 3.75 % for businesses. The repayment terms are up to 30 years with the 1st year of payments deferred.
Because applications will be processed on a first come first served basis and because funds have typically been allocated quickly, interested farms should apply as soon as possible.
If you previously applied for this program and were rejected, you are still eligible for this round of funding.
Open this link to view the SBA website and to find more information on eligibility. https://www.sba.gov/page/disaster-loan-applications.
Open this link to apply.
check Bob Hoban's take on the DEA removing epidiolex from controlled substance list
USDA Economic Viability of Industrial Hemp in the United States:
A Review of State Pilot Programs
USDA Drops DEA Testing
recap of 1st Annual CT HempFest - hosted by Running Brook Farms
Its not pot: CT hemp farm growing a new business
KILLINGWORTH It looks like cannabis. It feels like cannabis. It smells like cannabis.
But its not the kind of cannabis many equate with another product: marijuana . Its the hemp plant, now growing at Running Brook Farms.
The family owned farm has been in business for more than 50 years and sees the opportunity to grow hemp as a perfect way to extend their growing season. They are one of the first farms in the state to start growing hemp.
The synergy with our independent garden center is phenomenal, as far as growing cycles, said Site Manager Becky Goetsch. So right now, is definitely a slow time for us.
Everybodys bought their plants and planted their gardens, so hemp coming into our workflow is really important to us, actually, because the independent garden centers are struggling just as much as the farmers, as far as having a lot of competition with box stores and just the industry in general, she added.
'Hemp will thrive' in CT, retired farmer tells lawmakers
HARTFORD Legislators on the Environment Committee last week were urged to jump on board quickly to allow Connecticut farmers, especially the next generation of farmers, to become part of the growing list of states that have embraced cultivation of hemp as a way to revitalize the farming industry.
The committee heard testimony on three different bills that would authorize the growing, cultivation, production and processing of hemp in Connecticut. Currently, only Colorado, Oregon, and Vermont allow farmers to grow hemp under state supervision.
Hemp was grouped with marijuana and was declared a Schedule 1 drug in 1970. That, according to advocates of hemp, increased misconception of the plant, which comes from the same family of plant as marijuana, but does not include enough THC to get a person high.
Connecticut is sitting on top of a huge gold mine, said John Roe, a retired farmer from Canada who lives in Stonington. He told the committee that Connecticut has the right soil conditions, right climate conditions for hemp cultivation.
Yes, you can smoke hemp
Connecticut Hemp Industry Association Works to Revive Rural Economy
A brand-new association aims to revitalize Connecticuts rural economy with hemp, a crop now allowed to be grown under federal law that had been previously prohibited in the United States for more than 70 years. To fully legalize cultivation, the state needs to pass legislation allowing for the growing of hemp and submit an enforcement plan to the USDA. That process is underway.
The reason it is called the Connecticut Hemp Industry Association is that we are trying to support an industry in Connecticut that includes farmers, extractors, manufacturers, distributors, wholesalers, retail stores and more, says Jeff Wentzel, a founder and board member of the association. The key is to revive rural economies and really help the agricultural industry in the state. Hemp can be a huge boon to Connecticut.
The Connecticut Hemp Industry Association formally launched in February 2019, following the legalization of hemp production in the 2018 Farm Bill. The permitting and licensing of hemp production is the associations top priority in 2019. The term hemp means the plant Cannabis sativa L. and any part of that plant, including the seeds thereof and all derivatives, extracts, cannabinoids, isomers, acids, salts, and salts of isomers, whether growing or not, with a delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) concentration of not more than .3 percent on a dry weight basis.
CT hemp farming plan clears first hurdle
A pair of bills allowing commercial hemp farming in Connecticut have cleared their first hurdle, winning unanimous approval from the legislatures environment committee.
Advocates were emboldened by the move, but acknowledged the measures still have a long way to go.
Definitely, we feel encouraged, said Jeff Wentzel, head of the Connecticut Hemp Industry Association, an advocacy group. This has a good shot, but theres still going to be some heavy lifting.
Connecticut farmers eager and worried about new hemp laws
WEST SIMSBURY Connecticut farmers are desperately eager to take advantage of new federal legislation legalizing potentially lucrative hemp crops, but theyre worried a delay in state action could give other U.S. farmers a big head start in the hemp game.
Can we get the state to move quick enough to plant this spring? asks Don Tuller, a West Simsbury farmer and president of the Connecticut Farm Bureau.
Other states are way ahead of us, Tuller said of the push to get in on hemp cultivation that could bring a farmer as much as $100,000 an acre.
The reason industrial hemp is so valuable is that it can produce CBD oil, a non-intoxicating substance potentially useful in treating everything from anxiety to acne. Hemp-related production and sales could be worth billions of dollars, according to experts.
U.S. Rep. Joe Courtney, D-2, said hes been lobbying Governor-elect Ned Lamont to make state action on hemp a top priority. He gets it, he really understands, Courtney said of Lamonts realization of how important hemp crops could be to hard-pressed Connecticut farmers.