South Carolina


South Carolina farmers can apply now to grow hemp for 2021 season

marijuana plant close up

The South Carolina Department of Agriculture will accept applications for hemp farming permits for the 2021 growing season from Jan. 1 through Feb. 28, 2021.

The state's Hemp Farming Program has grown from 20 farmers in 2018 to 265 farmers in 2020 - and each year, the program has changed as state and federal laws changed. When the federal government approved South Carolina's State Hemp Plan in April 2020, the program entered a new period of regulatory stability, one that SCDA expects to continue in 2021. The agency now has six full-time staffers devoted to hemp regulation.

Requirements to receive a hemp farming permit include:


States to Watch in 2021: South Carolina

In advance of the 2021 legislative sessions, NORML will be providing a more detailed break down of legislative efforts in various states across the nation that are poised to enact significant marijuana reforms next year. This is the latest in a series of blogs examining where state-specific reform efforts stand.


South Carolina Pre-Files Cannabis Reform Bills

doctor handing over cbd oil

Many states have stepped up to legalize medical or recreational cannabis, and federal legalization or decriminalization could finally be on the horizon for the U.S. But South Carolina continues to hold out as one of the states without even a medical industry, falling behind the rest of the country.


Could 2021 be the year for medical pot in SC? Legislators gear up for debate

someone filling out medical form with bottles and oils

South Carolina lawmakers are slated to consider multiple bills next year that could legalize marijuana for either recreational or medicinal use.

Though some Democrats are pushing for complete decriminalization of the plant, there is a bipartisan effort to push legalization of medical marijuana in the state.

Medical marijuana bills prefiled this month in both the House and the Senate tout sponsors from both parties. If either bill — both named the “South Carolina Compassionate Care Act” — were to pass, South Carolina would join 36 other states in allowing the use of marijuana for medical purposes.


Medical marijuana in South Carolina: Republican lawmaker says bill could pass in 2021

gavel and marijuana buds

Right now, 36 states have legalized medical cannabis in some form. Advocates hope the Palmetto State is next.

Senator Tom Davis (R-Beaufort) prefiled S.150 the South Carolina Compassionate Care Act this week. Sen. Davis said he has been pushing for legalization of medical cannabis since 2014 and believes next year it has a chance to pass.

“I have a majority of state Senators who will vote for this and I have a majority of House members who will vote for this bill,” Davis said.


Marijuana Legalization – Medical Or Recreational – Still Faces Long Odds In South Carolina

someone handling cannabis bags

November was a huge month at the ballot box for marijuana legalization as voters in multiple states approved new medical and recreational measures. In Mississippi and South Dakota, voters overwhelmingly approved new medical marijuana laws – with Mississippi voters expressly rebuking their political leaders and endorsing an expansive decriminalization bill.

“Republican” officials in the Magnolia State had advocated on behalf of a far more restrictive medical marijuana bill – demeaning proponents of the broader proposal as “stoners.”


The Deep South’s Gradual Evolution on Cannabis

Marijuana often demonstrates the ability to win over even the most conservative of individuals. That said, winning over the hearts and minds of America’s vast regions isn’t complete until cannabis endears itself to the nation’s most conservative citizens and lawmakers in the southeast. 

Recent activity indicates that it may just be happening.

Commonly known as the Deep South, the region is the Bible Belt’s shiny, conservative buckle. It’s where conservative viewpoints almost always win out. There, progressive agendas like cannabis reform often face an uphill battle that rivals that of Sisyphus. 


Attorney Drafts Bill to Make Myrtle Beach a Decriminalized City for Cannabis

An attorney in Myrtle Beach wants to write a law that would decriminalize cannabis in the city of Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. 

Jonny McCoy is the man who served as attorney for Julian Betton, a man who was shot nine times by police during a drug raid in Myrtle Beach in 2015. Now, McCoy wants the city to decriminalize cannabis so something like this doesn’t happen again. 


State takes over SC-grown hemp tests to ensure THC levels aren’t too high

The task of testing hemp for for its primary psychoactive compound will now have to be handled by state inspectors rather than growers under a change in federal policy.

The S.C. Department of Agriculture has asked lawmakers for $1.6 million to hire staff, as well as pay for vehicles and travel, sampling equipment and laboratory costs.

The law mandates a hemp crop contain less than 0.3 percent tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, to be harvested. State inspectors will take samples from each field within two weeks prior to harvest to ensure proper levels, according to agency spokeswoman Eva Moore.


USDA Approves More State Hemp Plans

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced this week the approval of hemp production plans for two more states and three more Indian tribes.

The states to get the green light were South Carolina and West Virginia, making them the thirteenth and fourteenth states to gain approval. The tribe plans approved this week were for the Oglala Sioux Tribe, the Seneca Nation of Indians and the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa Indians.


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