The letter below is from Rep. Vernon Ehlers (R-MI 3rd District) to a Vote Hemp supporter in reply to a letter asking him to become a sponsor for the Industrial Hemp Farming Act of 2009.
Rep. Vernon Ehlers
(R-MI 3rd District)
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September 18, 2009
Thank you for contacting me about legislation that would open the way for commercial cultivation of industrial hemp in the U.S. (H.R. 1866). I appreciate knowing your views.
The Industrial Hemp Farming Act would amend the Controlled Substances Act to specify that the term "marijuana" does not include industrial hemp. Such a change would mean that state law would determine whether producers could grow and process industrial hemp within state borders, under state regulations. Currently, the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) determines whether any industrial hemp production authorized under a state statute will be permitted, and it enforces standards governing the security conditions under which the crop must be grown.
Hemp is commercially grown for fiber, seed, and oil for use in a variety of industrial and consumer products, including food. However, hemp contains low levels of a banned psychoactive chemical (tetrahydrocannabinol or THC).
This bill has been referred to two House Committees for possible consideration. Should the bill make it to the Floor of the House for a vote, I will keep your thoughts in mind. With warm regards, I am,
Vernon J. Ehlers
Member of Congress