Bill To Re-Introduce Industrial Hemp To Farmers Has Passed Senate
Monday, February 28, 2000
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. - The re-introduction of industrial hemp to Illinois farmers has moved one step closer to budding.
The Illinois Senate voted 49-9 last week on a measure to study the feasibility of industrial hemp production. The bill now advances to the House for consideration.
Sen. Evelyn Bowles, D-Edwardsville, reiterated that the measure is not an attempt to increase drug availability.
"This is not about a hallucinogenic drug, this is about industrial hemp," she said. "This has nothing to do with medicine and is not in any way an attempt to legalize any drugs."
Bowles assured her colleagues that her legislation would simply allow the study of the crop's potential viability at the university level as an alternative crop.
"Our farmers are struggling to make ends meet and are looking for a crop," she said.
The fibers from industrial hemp can be spun and woven into fabric for clothing, furniture and carpet, while the seeds can be used in everything from breakfast cereal to animal feed, Bowles explained.
"Hemp production flourished (in Illinois) during World War II," she added. "We're trying to save the farming interests by sowing the seeds of change."
The bill is SB 1397.
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A hotbed of cannabis activism, Washington State is home to many organizations working to bring about rational drug policy. Here are some things to get involved with:
Cannabis Defense Coalition has been very active lately. They focus on courtroom observation and medical marijuana activism.
The November Coalition, based in Colville, is a national reform group and works with prisoners and families.
SpoCannabis is a medical marijuana activist group in Spokane.
King Co. Bar Association Drug Policy Project has done amazing work educating the "suits" about the failure of our prohibition model of drug policy, and the need for a regulatory model of drug policy.
Seattle Hempfest is the third weekend in August on Seattle's waterfront.
Olympia Hempfest is a week after Seattle's big bash.