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Senate | June 22, 2016 | Chamber | Senate Agriculture

Full MP3 Audio File

[BLANK_AUDIO] I think we are gonna do a little something different to start out with the day that I do sometimes, if could have the Pages that are here with us today to go down there to the microphone, just push it on and tell us a little something about yourself, where you're from and which Senator sponsored you, could we do that? If you just line up and do, we've got a few here, do we get the other? Members of our committee here. [BLANK_AUDIO] And if there's something really great that you've learned while you've been here you could say something about that also. >> Do we have to sing the [INAUDIBLE]? >> No. [BLANK_AUDIO] That would be great. >> I'm Sarah Sharp. I'm from Hickory and I'm sponsored by Senator Daniels. >> Great. Anything exciting happen to you while you're here yet? I am sure it will if it hasn't yet. >> It's been interesting just sitting on things and kind of observe things, they're not really what I expected and not in a bad way, they're just >> [LAUGH] >> very different than what I expected. I have made some pretty good friends up in here, so that's been cool. >> That's great, thank you. >> Hi, my name is Kenzi Lobby and I am from Reidsville and I am sponsored by Senator Berger, it's kinda the same as Sarah, the meetings are interesting and it's different than what I expected. >> Thank you. >> Hi, my name is Claire Louis, I am from Reidsville and I am sponsored by Senator Berger and this is my second year doing this and I am happy that it wasn't exactly the same so I've gotten some new experience and I've been able to go around more and meet new people. >> Hi, my name is [INAUDIBLE] Lobby and I am from Louisville and my sponsor is Senator Berger and I've enjoyed sitting on the sessions and seeing how it all works and stuff like that. >> Thank you. >> I am Ashton Pride, I am from Winston-Salem, I am sponsored by Senator Clark and I really enjoyed meeting new people. >> Thank you very much. >> I am Don McLam, I am from Greenville and I am sponsored by Senator Phil Berger and something that I like about this is I get to meet a lot of new people around the state. >> Thank you very much. >> I'm Emma Tennenmaker. I'm from Carrey and I'm sponsored by Senator Woodard. I've enjoyed getting [UNKNOWN] on sessions and see how everything works. >> Thank you. >> I'm Ashely Johnson. I'm from Ashrow. I'm sponsored by Senator Tillman and I've met some great people here. >> We're gonna get you a new sponsor next time. >> [LAUGH] >> Is that everybody? All right. You can take your seats back and we really appreciate it. Now we'd like to recognize the sergeant at arms and we have Larry Hancock. >> Can I say something about myself? >> Sure. You wanna say anything about yourself? >> [LAUGH] >> Matt Irvin and Becky Marrick. Okay. So I think we'll move right into the agenda now. Representative Brody, if you're gonna present House Bill 992. Come to the podium and begin, sir. [BLANK_AUDIO] >> I thought we were done here? Okay. So just briefly on the bill and I certainly stand for questions once we established a commission or once we got to raise the money to establish a commission, we reviewed and said we'd like to increase the amount of commissioners on it to cover a couple of specific areas. Let's do that. We've added four more positions to the commission. So we brought the scope of it and in particular want to get more farmers involved as well as agriculture professionals. Further along in the bill, we have, and I'll certainly answer any questions section by section but this is already been out there. The purpose of the commission, and it's three fold for the most part although there are a number of specific ones, and they are, number one want to research. This is a research project. This isn't a, okay let's go out and do this now. It's a research project and it's one that's developed through the Drug Enforcement Agency who now controls the substance, the Cannabis plant and all it's spectrums.

And they allow these research projects because what we're seeing is that the country is realizing there's a lot of benefits to industrial hemp, the one side of the cannabis plant. And so we're gonna do the research on it. We're gonna find out how it grows in North Carolina, what kind of seeds, what kind of products. The next thing is the actual products themselves. We're going to research is this gonna be a viable industry in North Carolina. Will we be able to grow enough, and if we can grow enough, will we be able to use it in some way. And also a key point in North Carolina is because we're one of the first two who are going into this, there's a couple of states Colorado, Kentucky and North Dakota started it, if we get far enough ahead, we're not only looking at the growing but we're looking at the processing. Processing meaning we are gonna grow the products here and then we're gonna process them and send them around the country. And you saw in the second page of my hand out is all of these products that are coming in $300 million worth of products are coming into the United States. We manufacture virtually zero. But we are importing all these in here, so why not take advantage of that. The last one I wanna say is part of the commission and part of the research is that we include law enforcement in here because there are those questions that are gonna be asked about are we just making it a gateway to bringing marijuana into North Carolina. The answer really is no we aren't and as you study the plant the industrial hemp plant, versus the marijuana plant, it's like you're comparing a poodle to a Alaskan husky. They're both dogs but completely different. That's that cannabis plant and the far spectrums of it, how are we going to deal in the law enforcement issue when something like that may come up? Senator, I certainly would answer any questions and in case I forgot something. >> Thank you. Senator Macennes. >> Thank you Madam Chair and thank you Representative Brody for bringing this important piece of agriculture information and legislation forward to us. I would reiterate what you said, it's my understanding that you could smoke a ship load of industrial help and you would go a headache out of of it and nothing else, has no anything to compare to marijuana and I wanna make sure that that's in the record that we're not having anything to do with marijuna, I don't want to talk about that word, I wanna talk about industrial hemp that's on agriculture and enterprise in other parts of the that is used for many, many industrial application, and my question is to Madam Chair, I would want to know where the question was, when can we get seed on the ground and a crop growing? On this important issue and then I will have a followup. >> Representative Brody? >> Thank you Senator for that question. The intent of moving this bill this year which you saw, it comes pretty quick is that we want to start this program planting next Spring, so we will have our first crop sometime in late Spring or Summer of next year, we're gonna do this. Currently, Colorado is 8500 acres under cultivation in their research project, Kentucky has 4500 in their research project, we have left it up to the commission to decide how much we wanna start because they need to manage this but it will be developed around their research project. The seed in particular is an interesting issue because we don't grow it here, and we are gonna have to import the seed. Canada has about 80, some thousand acres under cultivation for industrial hemp and actually send some of their products for processing plant we have here but we're gonna have to buy that seed from out of the country which is one of the major road blocks from the the department of, the Drug Enforcement Agency is that they have to approve that seed coming, but there's what's called certified seeds so we'll actually know what we're growing and we're gonna get that but if we can't get that, we set up this research project then we'll be able to import our first batch of seed and from there we may start growing our own or continue that process. >> Follow up. >> With that, madam Chair, I move for a favorable report at the appropriate time. >> Thank you, Senator McInnis. Senator Cook. >> Thank you, Representative Brody. I appreciate you bringing this bill to us.

I see that this is an economic opportunity for North Carolina. I'm curious though if you've had anybody to make some estimate of what the potential economic impact of growing this crop in North Carolina would be? >> Thank you, Senator. The research project, part of it is to decide that very question. Number one if it's a viable product are we gonna be able to do something with. But I'll give you just an example of why North Carolina can lead this is because we have what's called the decortification plant. It's in North Carolina. It's around Spring Hope I believe that's the name of the community. We have the only one in the country that does that and what it does is it separates the fibers from the woody stalks you can see the tall plant and we have the only one in the country that's viable so we have a head start on whatever it is we wanna do. Now as far as the list of crops go in the front page my handout has a few but believe we are getting fabrics in from China, we are getting finished edible products from Europe and we're getting that all the time so it's just a matter of time we figure out if it's viable we're gonna have entrepreneurs in this state that the lights gonna go on and they're gonna say okay we can do this here now. >> Senator Cook follow up >> Follow up, going through some of your literature you passed up and answers my question. Current industry estimates the report that US retail sales of all hemp based products makes it 300 million per year. So there's some big bucks out there for North Carolina in the future if we do this right huh? >> Yes and just to reiterate also, we have the processing facility for some of those products right here right now that's under capacity, it's probably only up at that quarter, one quarter of capacity right now. >> Thank you representative Brody. Senator Randleman. >> Thank you madam chair. And my question is in reference to section five. Where you talk about civil and criminal penalties. Under the criminal penalties do you have an incarceration note. >> Actually I do. I did forget it though in the house version we didn't ask for it. So I kinda set it aside and I left without it. Yes I do. >> So can you provide that to the committee? >> Yes. Yes madam. >> Thank you. >> Senator Smith Ingram? >> My question was asked and answered by Senator Randleman. Thank you so much I am concerned and so madam chair, would there be a serial referral of this bill to one of the judicial committees in the senate or are we just gonna handle the incarceration note here. >> Senator my understanding is now is going to J one or two. >> Thank you just follow up with the statement. I think this will be huge for the textile fibers industry and I'm glad to see the study come forward and I look forward for great opportunities in terms of the hemp industry. >> Thank you, senator Alexander. >> Thank you madam chair. Reading from a note that just got passed to me, could you grow industrial hemp in a watermelon patch? >> [LAUGH] >> Representative Brody? >> [LAUGH] >> Only if they're not growing at the same time. >> Thank you sir. >> Any other questions? Yes. Senator Rabin. >> Thank you madam chair. Just wanted to reinforce senator Randleman and Smith Ingram's/g inquiry about the penalties. When you are talking about a craft that has potential illicit gain of the [INAUDIBLE]. We are talking about $2500 is nothing. It's pocket change Kerry sponsored that one? >> Yes, Sir, Representative Brady. >> Thank you Senator, it's really interesting because in the research that I happen to talk to, the folks in Colorado, I spent a lot of time on phone with them and we all know that Colorado not only does industrial hemp but it does recreation of Marijuana at the same time, both are legal in Colorado and that question came up. They have the same panel lease and the question came up and I asked specifically about that and his answer is that if you understand the two plants In themselves, you realize that you're not gonna have virtually none of that because of the fact that you cannot mix marijuana inside in an industrial hemp field because the industrial hemp

polinizes quicker and the marijuana You go after the leave and the flower, you don't want it to go to seed, that's where you get your maximum potential of the THC that you're seeking after and but because industrial hemp will polinize first, it'll cross pollinate with that flower and it'll basically Their ruins, they run a plant so anybody who's supposed to be an entrepreneur in selling illegal marijuana the last place they wanna be in with industrial hemp, and besides that the Law enforcement knows exactly where it is to do that. >> Followup. >> We've got followup please, well if If it gonna happen and we make the penalty higher nobody is gonna give her, but preclude any kind of [INAUDIBLE_AUDIO] act from going on better than simply $2500. >> [COUGH] >> Plus I understand using the model of Colorado, but this is North Carolina. >> Okay. Thank you. Thank you. >> Any other questions from the committee? Senator Brown you do. >> Okay. >> If not the Chair will go back to the motion that was made by Senator Magnus and that was for favorable report with the serial referral to Judiciary. All those in favor say, aye. >> Aye. >> Opposed, nay. Ayes have it, thank you so much. Okay, Representative Sternberg are you ready to present the next bill HB 345? >> There's a PCS. >> There's a PCS ? I belive There's a PCS. >> Madam Chair. >> Okay. >> I move for favorable with adaption of PCS. >> All in favor say aye. >> Aye. >> Opposed, nay. Senator Smith Ingram. >> [SILENCE] >> Thank you Madam Chairman The PCS for House Bill 345 is probably the simplest thing that you will look at this committee meeting today, and probably one of the simplest request that you might have looked at all year long. Basically, what this is, this is just changing a rule that's on the books now That would prohibit guns being fired under certain circumstances and what we're trying to do in North Hampton county is the natural wildlife resources commission is building a new state of the art shooting range in North Hampton county and without this change it seems like we're putting the cart in front of the horse but without this change which I'm sure is going to fly through without any problems, they would not be able to fly within this particular facility so this is a necessary change, one to accommodate the other. We have obviously this range would accommodate disabled folks who aren't able to practice using firearms under the kind of conditions that existed before, they need special conditions and veterans as well as the disabled veterans, so simple bill and hopefully, they shouldn't even, I would take, generate any questions but if they're any I'd be more than happy to go ahead and fill them. >> Senator Smith Ingram, do you have anything you'd like to add? >> Yes, you bet. >> This bill is fully supported by the local delegation, the county commissioner has passed a resolution in support of this, it would also allow North Hampton county with the installation of this firing range. It will fully enable us to be able to re-certify our law enforcement and allow them training opportunities that they have not had before. We fully believe that the Wildlife Commission is it's in a very good position to be able to ensure the safety and protection of our citizens so we would hope that you would support this bill and as the family of hunters and I truly enjoy the meditation that occurs with still hunting in a stand but this is the much needed provision so that we can move forward to allow the opportunities for our veterans, for our disabled, for our law enforcement to get training and be able to use the [INAUDIBLE] range. >> Any questions? >> No. >> I would say in favorable. >> Madam Chairman. >> [INAUDIBLE] right there say favorable Senator Rabin from you and I will come back at the appropriate time, Senator Jackson. >> Thank you Madam Chairman. Senator Smith Ingram, you mentioned something that got my attention, you said they're gonna be using this for training our law enforcement officers?

>> You will move to the mic Senator. >> Followup. >> Yes in support of this it would allow local training opportunities for some of our law enforcement for re-certification. >> Followup Senator Jackson? >> Thank you Madam Chairman, Senator, who would be providing that training and how's that incorporation with that we're currently doing at the Justice Academies? >> I am not sure but that was the information that was provided by the county commissioners and so there have been some talks underway about being able to spot that on the local level so that our law enforcement doesn't have to travel out of the county to be able to access some of that training, but I am not sure Sir how that differs with what we are doing? >> Well, Senator Smith Ingram, could you get that information for Senator Jackson. >> I will, I will get that for you, before it comes to the floor. >> Thank you Madam Chairman. >> Other questions, Senator McInnis. >> Thank you Madam Chair, now does the PCS do away with the folks hunting/g issues so that's off the table now we are not having any discussion on [UNKNOWN] honey. Its all about the fire, the wildlife resources commission firearms [UNKNOWN] >> Representative. >> Yes, senator that is correct. This is yet. There are foxes dancing around here a little while ago but we are taking care of that. Thank you. >> Any other question from the committee? Seeing none, the chair will recognize Senator Rabin for the motion. >> [INAUDIBLE] >> Okay, think we're going to unfavorable to the original and favorable to the PCS. And there is no referral on this one. All those in favor say aye? >> Aye. >> Opposed neigh? Motion carries, it will be on the floor, next up? >> Thank you madam chair, thank you committee and thank you Senator Ingram. >> And Representative Stam before you leave, could you let us know who is gonna run both those bills on the floor for the Senate? >> Senator Clark [INAUDIBLE] >> He will run this bill? And who's gonna run the first bill you had on that? >> First bill? >> Yes, Sir. >> Let's have Senator Jackson if he's willing to do so, would you be willing to run the hemp bill on the [INAUDIBLE] >> The bill [INAUDIBLE] you're holding but it's got here the J committee on that. >> Well, it might be Senator Bingham. >> [INAUDIBLE] >> Okay, you're right. >> [CROSSTALK]. >> Any other comments from the committee? Thank you, we'll stand as adjourned now. [SOUND] [BLANK_AUDIO]