Tuesday, May 14, 2019


TEXAS SENATE DUE TO VOTE ON HEMP BILL TODAY

UPDATE:  The Senate is waiting on the Lt. Governor to allow for the vote.  It is on the floor it just needs to be called.  Not all Bills placed on the floor will be voted on today.  THEN - because of some changs in the Senate version the House and Senate have to come up with a united Bill which both must pass before it goes to the Governor.  The support is strong from the farmers, Republicans, and Democrats.

ORIGINAL POST

I have lobbied all over the state for the legalization of hemp as a new crop option for 19 years.  What a glorious day it be.  Until this year the state would have to get a special license to grow hemp.  But this year with U.S. Senator Mitch McConnell of Kentucky leading the way, hemp was finally legalized nationwide, leaving the states to opt in if they chose.  Hemp is the replacement crop for tobacco in Kentucky.

It has been a 19 year battle.  Thousands of people have worked on this issue.  But I am proud to say our own State Rep. Alex Dominguez helped to push this along.

Representative Dominguez Files Hemp Production and Regulation Bill  print page

by: Rep. Dominguez, Alex
01/30/2019
AUSTIN-- Today, State Representative Alex Dominguez (Brownsville) filed House Bill 1230, relating to the production and regulation of hemp. House Bill 1230 aims to create a hemp production plan that gives the state primary regulatory authority over the production of hemp in Texas.

"This session, the Legislature has the opportunity to pass legislation that will create jobs in our rural and agricultural communities," Dominguez said. "Rural redevelopment is paving the way for Texas leadership--industrial, agricultural and natural."

Now that the federal government has legalized industrial hemp production on the national level, it is up to the state of Texas to lead the charge as an agriculture community in this blossoming industry.

"While the sale of hemp products is currently legal in Texas, it is now time for people to have Texas grown hemp," Dominguez added.

House Bill 1230 is Representative Dominguez's first filed bill of the 86th Legislative Session.
WHAT IS NEXT?
Hemp uses a lot less water than cotton and needs no pesticides.  Its use ranges from hospital blankets and gowns because it contains a natural antibody to kill bacteria in the fabric, to over a thousand products, including truck mats.  It also makes paper which saves our forests.
Land prices in the farming areas will go up if the county does its job.
GBIC should immediately begin looking to help fund manufacturing and distribution facilities in Brownsville for the promotion of hemp.
The county needs to take the lead in educating our farmers as to the low cost of growing hemp, and its marketability.
The county needs to join with all of the cities to lay out a plan for development of this multi-billion dollar industry.  
Logic says the smaller farming communities where the hemp is grown should get the processing plants.
The cities need to work together to bring to several different manufacturing facilities.  Tax abatements need to be put on the table to anyone willing to build a manufacturing facility.
The port and airport area are the natural place for our distribution centers.  Both need to get on board to start looking at options.
GUYS THIS CAN BRING MILLIONS AND MILLIONS OF DOLLARS TO THE AREA TO INCLUDE TAX REVENUE
The county now needs to vote for the creation of a working committee to work on these issues to advice the farmers, county and the cities.  The committee should have representatives from all cities, farmers, and local business people who understand manufacturing and distribution.  We need grant writers from all entities looking into funding and working as a unit.

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