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Kentucky’s House Bill 136/SB 170
Kentucky’s House Bill 136 = Department of ABC – Department of Agriculture
Medical Marijuana Cultivation - Department of Agriculture
No Department of Agriculture!  No benefits to KY farmers!
Vote Yes to HB 136 but with Department of Agriculture
Vote No to HB 136 with no changes

February 9, 2019, last night I attended a meeting sponsored by Kentuckians for Medical Marijuana asking for our support of KY HB 136.  Prior to my attendance, I was contacted by this group about attending the meeting since I’m a candidate for Commissioner of Agriculture and had already expressed my potential concern with an op ad “Hemp/Medical Marijuana), A Kentucky Farmer’s Lifeline”.   Over the last week or so I had been putting together a summary of my concerns with where HB136 was taking us and who it benefited (I’m learning always follow the money).  I expressed my concerns and told him I would be at the meeting.  We listened to the K4MM summary of the bill and also they expressed their feelings that this was the best compromise for passage of the bill, that they felt we could achieve.  We then heard compelling stories from some attendees about the need for this bill and overall the sentiment was a vote “Yes”.  But one young man’s sobering story (dairy farmer from Hart Co) was a little different.  He talked about the decimation of the dairy industry in his county and where it was leaving them financially.  He finally asked, how did this bill benefit his family’s small farming business and the answer was “NO” it didn’t.
I then addressed the audience, that I was 100% in support of medical marijuana, but had deep reservation about the way it was being proposed and would have to defer and fight for KY farmers and for KDA inclusion in this process.  I then used their flowchart to suggest where compromise and inclusion of KYDA could benefit everyone.  The majority of this bill is very well crafted to safely implement usage but some core items will be another nail in the coffin for agriculture in this state (Follow The Money).  I’m asking every voter to reach out to their representatives and simply ask them where does this help or hurt Kentucky?  I’m asking every farmer to look their representatives in the face and say will it help Kentucky’s agriculture?  Do we want to be like California where farmers are suing the state over the large corporate takeover of cannabis agriculture?

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