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Kentucky: LMPD Seizes 100 Pounds Of Marijuana From Residence


By Derrick Stanley
Hemp News

A Louisville, Kentucky man faces drug trafficking charges after police seized 100 pounds of marijuana from his home.

Court records show police also found cultivation equipment, while serving a search warrant in the 4100 block of Landside Dr., according to an arrest citation released Thursday.

In addition to the 100 pounds of pot and the cultivation equipment, officers found 87 pot plants, drug paraphernalia, and currency in the basement, according to the citation.

Jason Tornay, 36, owner of the home, was arrested and charged with cultivation of marijuana (five plants or more), traffic in marijuana (more than five pounds), and buying or possessing drug paraphernalia, court records show.

Tornay was scheduled to be arraigned on Thursday, court records show.

Photo Metro Corrections

Kentucky: State Senator Proposes Bill To Legalize Marijuana


By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

Recreational marijuana use would become legal in the Bluegrass State in 2016 under if a new bill in the Legislature becomes law.

The Cannabis Freedom Act is being sponsored by state Senator Perry Clark (D-Louisville), and it would legalize cannabis use for those 21 and older, decriminalize growing, distribution, and public consumption, and place an excise tax on weed, reports Jackson French at the Bowling Green Daily News.

"Originally what inspired me was a group of retired Teamsters," said Clark. The union members knew that using cannabis was a cheaper and healthier alternative to costly pharmaceutical prescription painkillers, he said.

"They didn't want to be criminalized for something that shouldn't have been criminalized in the first place," Clark said.

His bill is heavily based on Colorado's Amendment 64, which legalized marijuana there in 2012, when it was approved by 55 percent of the state's voters. Colorado raised $100 million in taxes during the 2014-2015 fiscal year on recreational marijuana sales.

In addition, Colorado's marijuana arrests and citations have dropped 80 percent, and the state's tourism has increased by 10 percent, according to Clark.

"Since they legalized cannabis, everything's gotten better," he said.

Kentucky: Cannabis Freedom Act Filed To Legalize Marijuana


By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

State Senator Perry B. Clark of Louisville on Friday said he has pre-filed the Cannabis Freedom Act, which would legalize and regulate the use of marijuana in Kentucky similarly to alcohol.

The bill would repeal the Commonwealth's current prohibition on cannabis cultivation, possession and sales, according to a press release from Senator Clark, reports Lex18.com.

Clark said the bill would replace prohibition with a framework that would "promote public safety and responsible cannabis consumption by persons over 21 years of age."

"No one has adequately answered the question as to why cannabis is illegal," Sen. Clark said. "We were sold a bill of goods. We were bamboozled.

"It is abundantly clear to me that cannabis, while being much less harmful, should be treated the same as alcohol," said Sen. Clark. "The Cannabis Freedom Act is an outline on how to tax and regulate the sale of marijuana to adults 21 and older in Kentucky. It is time for this discussion in our Commonwealth."

"Few believe that anyone should be incarcerated where the cannabis plant is involved," Clark said. "Most of my life we have expended tax dollars pursuing a ban on a plant. Wasted dollars they were.

Kentucky: Baptists Fight Off Push To Legalize Medical Marijuana


By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

Kentucky Baptists may have won a major legislative victory by helping to defeat a measure in the General Assembly that would have legalized marijuana for medicinal purposes, but they managed to give themselves a public relations black eye in the process, showing themselves to both be out of touch with modern medical research, and severely lacking in compassion, as well.

Almost as distressing as the fact that they were able to stop this compassionate legislation in its tracks is the fact that these heaven-dazed idiots were proud of themselves for doing it.

Legislators finished the 2015 session early Wednesday morning without passing a bill which would have made cannabis available for medical purposes.

Kentucky Baptist Convention Executive Director Paul Chitwood, who apparently was determined to flaunt his ignorance in front of large numbers of people, had called on lawmakers to reject the proposal, claiming Kentucky shouldn't follow the lead of other states that have done the same.

The KBC is Kentucky's largest religious organization, and as such has a powerful voice in the state, where 1 million of the state's 4.4 million residents self identify as Southern Baptists. Those demographics -- which correlate strongly with conservative political positions -- filter into the Legislature, where almost half the Senate and a third of the House identify themselves as Baptists.

Kentucky: First Legal Hemp Crop In 70 Years Harvested


By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

The first legal hemp harvest in Kentucky in 70 years has begun at the University of Kentucky. Researchers on Tuesday cut their test plot, which will now remain in the field for two weeks.

The 10-foot stalks will remain on the ground at Spindletop Farm for "retting," the process through which they break apart, said David Williams, an agronomist at the UK College of Agriculture, reports Janet Patton at the Herald-Leader.

"Microbes break down the tissues of the stem," Williams said. "The outside tissues form the bast fibers and the inside form the hurd fibers."

Thirteen varieties of hemp were sown this spring at the University; each will be evaluated for fiber and seed production. More test plots are at other universities in the state, including Murray State.

"It was a good growing season for many crops, not just hemp," Williams said. "Precipitation was excellent this year and more than adequate for growth.

"The only downside to the growing season was that we planted a little bit late, but I don't think that had much effect on the crop," he said.

The seeds had been held up for two weeks in Louisville by the federal Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), which blocked them because the Kentucky Department of Agriculture didn't have a controlled substance import permit.

Kentucky: Italian Hemp Seeds Facing One Final Hurdle Before Being Planted


By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

A shipment of Italian hemp seeds has made it safely to Kentucky, where the law was recently changed to allow the growing of industrial hemp for university research projects, but federal customs officials in Louisville have so far refused to release the 250 pounds of seeds to the Kentucky Department of Agriculture.

The confusion is keeping the hemp seeds from getting to research project locations in the state, according to Kentucky officials, reports Kevin Willis at WKY Public Radio.

"I spoke with a Customs official in Chicago, and once I advised her of what the law is, and what we're doing at the Department of Agriculture, Customs in Chicago released the seeds to Louisville, and now it's just a question of getting everyone on the same page," said Holly Harris VonLuehrte, chief of staff at the Kentucky Agriculture Department.

VonLuehrte said she believes Customs officials will release the hemp seeds within "the next 24 hours."

The shipment of seeds from Italy is meant to supply three pilot hemp research projects in the Bluegrass State. VonLuehrte said the Department of Agriculture already has a prior shipment of hemp seeds ready to plant next Friday in Rockcastle County, home to a pilot hemp project being conducted by Kentucky State University.

Kentucky: House Committee to Hold Public Hearing on Medical Marijuana Bill on Thursday


HB 350, the Cannabis Compassion Act, would allow people with debilitating medical conditions to access and use medical marijuana without fear of arrest

The Kentucky House Health and Welfare Committee is scheduled to hold a public hearing on Thursday at 12 noon ET on a bill that would allow people suffering from conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis (MS), and HIV/AIDS to use medical marijuana if their doctors recommend it. The hearing will be held in Room 169 of the Kentucky Capitol Annex Building.

HB 350, known as the Cannabis Compassion Act, introduced on February 10 by Rep. Mary Lou Marzian (D-Louisville), a registered nurse, was the first effective medical marijuana bill ever introduced in the Kentucky House of Representatives. It would allow licensed patients and caregivers to possess and cultivate limited amounts of marijuana.

It would also establish safety compliance facilities and permit one medical marijuana compassion center for every 100,000 state residents. Sen. Perry Clark (D-Louisville) introduced a similar measure, SB 43, earlier this year.

Kentucky: Poll Shows 52% Favor Medical Marijuana


By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

Kentucky residents favor medical marijuana by a margin of 15 percentage points, according to a new WHAS11/Courier-Journal Bluegrass Poll released on Sunday night. According to the poll, 52 percent favor allowing the use of medical marijuana in Kentucky, while 37 percent oppose it and 12 percent are not sure.

Senator Perry Clark (D-Louisville) sponsors Senate Bill 43, which would legalize the medicinal use of cannabis in Kentucky, as has been done in 20 other states, reports Joe Arnold at WHAS11. "The science is far on our side," Clark said. "Cannabis is medicine. It's medicine in its many forms."

Predictably, law enforcement opposes the bill, claiming it would be easy to abuse.

"It's very difficult to regulate," claimed Kentucky State Police Commissioner Rodney Brewer. "The laws are vague. They're not well thought out. So, there's a host of issues that go with it aside from it not being proven."

"You have of lot of testimony on both sides of folks saying it makes me feel better or doesn't," Brewer claimed, ignoring the fact that nobody's saying it doesn't. "But in the end, there's never been any scientific evidence that this is a viable medicine for out illnesses," he lied, ignoring thousands of scientific studies which show exactly that.

Kentucky: Medical Marijuana Bill Introduced In House


Legislation would allow people with debilitating medical conditions to access and use medical marijuana without fear of arrest

Similar bill already introduced in Senate

A bill that would allow seriously ill Kentuckians to use medical marijuana with a doctor’s recommendation was introduced in the House of Representatives last week. The “Cannabis Compassion Act,” or HB 350, was introduced by long-time lawmaker and registered nurse Rep. Mary Lou Marzian (D-Louisville). It is very similar to SB 43, which was introduced in the Senate by Sen. Perry Clark (D-Louisville) earlier this year.

The bill is the first effective medical marijuana bill ever to be introduced in the Kentucky House of Representatives. HB 350 would allow patients suffering from cancer, multiple sclerosis (MS), HIV/AIDS, and other serious conditions to use medical marijuana with a recommendation from their doctor.

Patients and caregivers would be able to possess up to three ounces at a time and grow up to 12 plants per patient. The bill would also establish safety compliance facilities and would permit one medical marijuana compassion center for every 100,000 residents to ensure safe and reliable access for patients.

Kentucky: Lawmaker Says Cannabis Oil More Likely To Get Support


By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

A Republican state senator in Kentucky on Wednesday said that state lawmakers should look at whether oil extracts from marijuana can provide medicinal benefits.

Measures to legalize cannabis oil stand a much better chance of passing the Legislature than bills to legalize medical marijuana as a plant, said Sen. Julie Denton (R-Loiuisville), who chairs the Senate Health and Welfare Committee, reports Mike Wynn at The Courier-Journal.

"People need to get comfortable with something that they don't feel threatened by, that they can understand and that they can support rather than going from 0 to 60 all in one fell swoop," she said. (I would suggest to Sen. Denton that her job is to educate her constituents, rather than dumb-down legislation so as not to alarm them.)

The committee heard nearly an hour's worth of testimony from advocates who said the cannabis plant (and its oils) can treat medical conditions ranging from epilepsy to diabetes.

Sen. Denton said that cannabis oil is more likely to win support in this year's session because of its low levels of THC, the primary psychoactive component in marijuana. (She has evidently heard about CBD oil, and has incorrectly assumed that all cannabis oil is CBD oil, but of course there is also THC oil and full-extract oil which contains all the cannabinoids).

Kentucky: State Senator Leads Charge For Medical Marijuana


By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

A state senator from Louisville is hoping to add Kentucky to the 18 states which have legalized medical marijuana.

Senator Perry Clark has introduced a bill for the 2013 legislative session that would legalize cannabis for medicinal uses in the Bluegrass State, reports WHAS 11.

Sen. Clark and dozens of people, including members of the group Kentuckians for Medical Marijuana celebrated at Clark's home on Sunday in anticipation of a public hearing on August 21 in the Health and Welfare joint committee, composed of members of the Kentucky Senate and House. The group used the party to announce that Irvin Rosenfeld, one of the four remaining recipients of federal medical marijuana, will speak at the August hearing, reports WDRB.

"It's time," Sen. Clark said. "Forty percent of the states have already passed medical marijuana laws and Kentucky has kind of fallen behind on that. The science is far on our side.

"Cannabis is medicine," Clark said. "It's medicine in it's many forms."

"I will not stop advocating for this bill," said Erin Grossman. Erin suffers from chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy, which affects the nervous system; she said marijuana would ease her pain. "We're advocating for safe access, safe medicine for Kentuckians."

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