A bill that would lay the groundwork for a Wyoming hemp industry is headed to Governor Mark Gordon after winning final approval from the Wyoming Senate earlier this week.

The bill had previously cleared the Wyoming House of Representatives. Hemp is a cannabis plant closely related to marijuana, but containing much lower levels of THC, the psychoactive ingredient in pot. Hemp was until recently considered a controlled substance under federal law, but a new farm bill decriminalizes hemp.

One of the provisions of Wyoming House Bill 171 is an allocation of funding for testing of Wyoming hemp plants to make sure the THC levels fall below a designated threshold. A Senate committee at one point removed that funding--essentially gutting the bill.

But the money for testing was put back in on the floor of the Wyoming Senate.

The body passed the bill on Monday, with only two no votes. The dissenters were Sen. Eli Bebout [R-Roverton] and Sen. Ogden Driskill {R-Devils Tower]. Hemp is used in the manufacture of a wide variety of products, ranging from fiber for ropes to medicinal products to various plastics.

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