September 1, 2014

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Senate Ag Panel unanimously passes hemp bill

Agriculture Commissioner James Comer testifies to the state Senate Agriculture Committee as U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, right, and Reps. Thomas Massie, left, and John Yarmuth listen in Frankfort. Kentucky Department of Agriculture photo by Chris Aldridge.

Before a packed house filled with hemp supporters, the Kentucky Senate Agriculture Committee unanimously passed Senate Bill 50, Sen. Paul Hornback’s legislation that provides an administrative framework if and when the federal government legalizes industrial hemp.

Republican Majority Leader Damon Thayer made the motion for passage as U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, U.S. Reps. John Yarmuth and Thomas Massie and Kentucky Agriculture Commissioner James Comer testified together in support of the bill. In a showing of bipartisanship, the motion was seconded by Democrat Sen. Robin Webb.

“This is by far the most impressive panel to testify on a bill in my 13 years in Frankfort,” Commissioner Comer said. “We’re honored that Senate Bill 50 passed by a unanimous vote.”