SD lawmakers debate over funding for hemp
PIERRE, S.D. — The debate over legalizing industrial hemp in South Dakota is now centered on money.
Gov. Kristi Noem and lawmakers have vastly different estimates for legalization. The governor argues that hemp would make it necessary to change how the state enforces marijuana laws, a staff expansion, drug testing and law enforcement across three state agencies. Lawmakers say hemp is an agricultural program similar to other crops that would require oversight by one person, and part-time testing by law enforcement.
Noem has said she would allow industrial hemp this year, but only if it meets her requirements, which includes adequate funding for the program.