South Carolina


SC farmers will grow more hemp as 2019 season gets underway

Across South Carolina, farmers have long been planning their 2019 crops, and none more intently than the farmers who are invested in the state’s newest and most talked-about crop: hemp.

After a decades-long ban, 2018 was the first year in which Palmetto State farmers could legally grow hemp, with 20 farmers across the state being permitted to grow up to 20 acres each. A myriad of stipulations and background checks were placed on these farmers, but the program is growing statewide. In 2019, 40 farmers across 24 counties will be able to grow double the amount from last year, up to 40 acres each. Nineteen of the original 20 farmers are included in this year’s growing roster.


South Carolina Attorney General calls medical cannabis “the most dangerous drug in the world”

South Carolina is working on a bill to legalize medical cannabis, but despite bipartisan support, SC Attorney General Alan Wilson does not approve.


South Carolina lawmakers try to legalize medical marijuana, again

South Carolina lawmakers are once again introducing legislation to legalize marijuana for treatment of critically ill patients in the state, making another go at a debate that has gradually made progress in this deeply red state in recent years.

Sen. Tom Davis, a Republican from Beaufort, told The Associated Press that would file the Compassionate Care Act in the state Senate this week. In the House, Republican Rep. Peter McCoy of Charleston is sponsoring similar legislation.


New poll shows most South Carolinians support medical marijuana

A new poll shows that a wide majority of South Carolinians support legalizing marijuana for medical use.

The results from Benchmark Research shows that 72 percent of 400 South Carolinians polled support legalizing medical marijuana, including 84 percent of Democrats, 78 percent of independents and 63 percent of Republicans.

Geographically, medical marijuana had the strongest support in the Lowcountry, with 76 percent. The Midlands showed 71 percent support for legalization. And the Upstate and the Pee Dee registered 73 percent and 65 percent respectively.


SC inmate wants to be supplied marijuana, says it's part of his religion

A South Carolina inmate is now suing the Department of Corrections, saying they violated his religious freedoms by not allowing him to smoke marijuana.

James Rose, 41, is serving a life sentence at Lieber Correctional Institute following a 2013 murder conviction. Authorities say he was involved in an execution-style murder of the son of a town council member in Lincolnville.

In the lawsuit, Rose stated the Department of Corrections violated his constitutional rights by not allowing him to practice his religion by growing his hair to an unlimited length or by giving him marijuana as part of the Rastafarian religious practice.


Learning how to farm hemp: Presence of crop in South Carolina will expand in second season

Albert Bueno was one of the few farmers with fields located in The T&D Region who participated in the state’s industrial hemp pilot program this year.

He is looking forward to building on what he learned heading into next year’s pilot project.

The South Carolina Department of Agriculture selected Bueno as one of 20 farmers in the state for the 2018 Industrial Hemp Pilot Program. The crop was grown on a total of 365 acres in 15 counties.

Approximately 45 acres of hemp were grown in The T&D Region. Bueno, a resident of Lexington County, planted 20 acres in Orangeburg County. The other farmers were John Fogle and Patrick Jamison Jr.


Hemp's first harvest in South Carolina is 'a lot of trial and error'

Hemp. It's still pretty new to the Palmetto State. Growers just had their first harvest of it here since the 1930's.

"It was a lot of trial and error, a little bit of research. Hemp being brand new in South Carolina since World War II era, we're learning a lot," said Wyatt Sage, the growth supervisor for Palmetto Harmony.

Palmetto Harmony is one of the 20 hemp growers selected for South Carolina's pilot program. "Most surprising thing we've had happen here? Really just the problem of everybody thinking it's marijuana has been a pretty big surprise," said Sage.

Not only has Sage learned this first season growing hemp, he's been trying to teach about what it is. "It's really cool to talk to people who don't know much about hemp or the CBD," said Sage.


Medical marijuana passes by a landslide in SC Democratic primary

South Carolina Democrats gave medical marijuana a landslide victory Tuesday, with 82 percent declaring in an advisory vote that doctors should be allowed to prescribe the drug.

The question “Do you support passing a state law allowing doctors to prescribe medical marijuana to patients?” was approved by Democrats in all of the state's 46 counties during Tuesday's primary.

The nonbinding ballot initiative is the latest boost for legalized medical marijuana, which has been embraced by key committees in both the S.C. House and Senate.


Medical marijuana bill moves forward in South Carolina

A medical marijuana bill moves forward in South Carolina. But will it ultimately be signed into law?

After action by a legislative committee, the medical marijuana bill moves forward in South Carolina. Members of the House Medical, Military, Public and Municipal Affairs (3M) Committee voted 14-3 to send the South Carolina Compassionate Care Act to the full House for consideration. The bill would allow seriously ill patients with a doctor’s recommendation to use medical marijuana to treat their conditions.


South Carolina one step closer to legalizing medical marijuana

Medical marijuana could become legal in South Carolina.

Thursday, a senate sub-committee passed a bill that would allow the legalization of marijuana for critically ill patients.

After years of debate, for the first time ever, the bill is headed to the Senate floor but has a slim chance of passing this year.

The session ends on May 10, lawmakers still have to settle on a state budget and debate on hundreds of pending bills on the senate floor.

Despite the challenges of time, some voters say they are looking forward to the bill passing.


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