Two Tennessee House Committees Pass Measure to Reduce Cannabis Penalty

A bill to reduce the penalty for possessing between half an ounce, and an ounce of cannabis has been passed by two House committees in Tennessee.

House Bill 109 was passed recently through both the House Criminal Justice Committee, and the House Finance, Ways and Means Committee. It’s been referred to the Calendar and Rules Committee where it can be scheduled for a vote by the full House of Representatives.

Under current Tennessee law, possessing up to half an ounce of cannabis is a misdemeanor punishable by up to a year in jail. Possessing over that amount is a felony punishable by up to six years in jail (this increases if more than 10 pounds is possessed). House Bill 109 would amend the law to make the more minor offense apply to possession of up to an ounce of cannabis, rather than just half an ounce. Possessing over an ounce would remain a felony.

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Bill to Legalize Hemp Passes Tennessee House Committee

hempHouse Bill 2032, a proposal to fully legalize the cultivation and production of industrial hemp, has received approval from Tennessee’s House Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee. It now heads to the House Government Operations Committee, where its passage will send it to the full House of Representatives.

The proposed law, introduced by Representative Jeremy Faison (R-Cosby), would make it so that those wanting to cultivate and produce industrial hemp are allowed to do so, given they register with, and receive a license from the Tennessee Department of Argiculture. The proposal would not require federal approval to take effect, and would apply to commercial hemp production, not exclusively for research as it is in states like Kentucky.

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Tennessee Receives Approval from DEA to Import Hemp Seeds

Thehemp-seeds-kentucky Tennessee Department of Agriculture has received approval from the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) to import hemp seeds.

The production and cultivation of industrial hemp became legal in Tennessee on July 1st of last year, thanks to legislation approved by lawmakers – and signed by the state’s governor – earlier that year. The law allows farmers to legally cultivate hemp – defined as having 0.3% THC or less – so long as they register with the Department of Agriculture.

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Hemp Cultivation Now Legal in Tennessee

The cultivation of industrial hemp is now legal in Tennessee, thanks to House Bill 2445 officially becoming law yesterday,hemptennessee July 1st. Under the new law, individuals in Tennessee will be allowed to legally grow hemp, given it has 0.3% THC or less, and they register with the state’s Department of Agriculture.

David Waddell, Administrative Manager for the Department of Agriculture’s Consumer and Industries Services Division, tells us that the Department has yet to finalize the registration process, meaning that people can’t yet apply to become a licensed hemp cultivator. However, Waddell says; “Our goal is to have everything in place by the first of the year, so everyone has time to get their crop in next year.”

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