Indiana Senate Favors Hemp Legalization
After months of state-wide legislation confusion that lead to lengthy legislative hearings, the Hoosier state has taken a decisive leap toward legalizing the purchase, possession, use, and distribution of “low THC extract” Cannabidiol (CBD) products for all its residents of legal age. On Monday—March 6, 2018—Senate Bill (SB) 52 passed through the Indiana Senate with a 35-13 vote in favor of the legal use and distribution of CBD products containing no more than 0.3 percent THC. PrimeMyBody’s Nano-Enhanced Hemp Oil has a non-detectable THC Phytocannbinoid diol hemp extract that contains less than 0.3 percent THC.
The SB 52 ruling follows on the heels of House Bill 1137, introduced earlier this year by Rep. Jim Lucas, which modeled after the 2014 Farm Bill and pushed that “a person may process, manufacture, possess, transport, sell, distribute, or otherwise use industrial hemp or industrial hemp products” in Indiana.
“House Bill 1137 recognizes the whole hemp plant and all of its by-products, and one of those is CBD. It also created a regulatory structure from which people could grow this (hemp). Instead of just recognizing and legalizing CBD, we went after the whole plant. If we are going to sell a by-product of something, why don’t we—with Indiana being an agricultural state and the No. 1 manufacturing state in the nation—combine the two and recognize everything,” says Rep. Lucas.
The creation of both HB 1137 and SB 52 were prompted by Rep. Lucas and other state representatives after Indiana ran into legislative confusion and controversy surrounding industrial hemp when state law officials seized and confiscated large quantities of what turned out to be legal hemp products from grocers in the summer 2017.
“HB 1137 was created because of the embarrassment we found our state in. Here we had the attorney general declaring it illegal, when many thought it was clearly legal, including myself. When you have the excise department going around confiscating product without charging people, something clearly had to be done,” adds Rep. Lucas.
Previously, CBD use in Indiana was only legalized for permitted residents with specific medical illness, like epilepsy.
Chapter 21 of SB 52 states, “a person may: distribute low THC extract derived from industrial hemp to a retailer in Indiana.” Further, SB 52 statutes include, “a person may sell low THC extract derived from industrial hemp at retail if the packaging complies with the requirements of IC (Indiana Code) 24-4-21.”
Although SB 52 received some legislative pushback from representatives who stand by the DEA’s interpretation that industrial hemp is a controlled substance, the majority of Indiana representatives, like Sen. James Tomes (R-Wadesville) who supported the passing of SB 52, viewed the legalization of CBD oil and its derivative products as a crucial benefit for residents and families that may be suffering from health issues.
“At the point, I’m interested in what the federal government has to say, but I’m more interested in what our citizens have to say,” said Tomes—who, along with Sen. Karen Tallian (D-Portage) urged constituents, “to consider the anecdotal evidence and committee testimony regarding the (health and wellness) properties of CBD oil.”
After the passing of SB 52, the bill is forecasted to be signed by Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb by mid to late March. Legalization of SB 52 and HB 1137 and their rulings will then go into effect on July 1, 2018.
On his personal stance regarding the role low-THC extract can play in Indiana Rep. Lucas said, “I used to be indifferent, but with the confusion that Indiana found itself in I started educating myself and, the more I dove in, the more I learned or became convinced this is the right thing to do. I’m very active on social media and have heard from countless people who enjoy the benefits of CBD. Then, when you see that the American Legion supports it and Epilepsy Foundation supports it…to me it’s a no brainer.
Each state ruling in favor of hemp oil legalization is a benefit to our PrimeMyBody community, and, more importantly, is an invaluable asset to every American citizen who deserves alternative approaches to health and wellness.
If you live in a state where hemp oil is being debated for legality we strongly urge you to contact your local representative. For representative contact information in your region visit National Hemp Association.