Montana

Thu
31
Oct

National Political Action Committee pushing for cannabis legalization in Montana

Momentum could be building for the legalization of recreational weed in Montana. That’s because a local group working for cannabis reform in the state has just received big time backing from advocacy groups.

If the efforts in Montana succeed, voters could see legalization on the ballot next year. However, with all that said, there is still a long ways to go. That includes getting initial approval for the proposal and then gathering enough signatures to qualify for the ballot.

Thu
31
Oct

Sow much hemp: A large harvest prompts fears of oversupply

Last week, Sam Markowski pulled his pickup truck into a field where he once planted 10 acres of feed corn. Instead of neat rows of corn stalks, however, thousands of dark green hemp plants dotted the landscape.

Markowski, wearing a fleece and a baseball cap bearing the name of his family's excavation company, threaded his way through the pungent plants toward a lone worker in the distance, framed by hills of fading fall foliage.

Chris Teitsma gently squeezed the flower-laden stalk top of a hemp plant, known as the cola, and explained how he knew the time for harvesting had arrived. "You want them fat and firm like this," Teitsma said, showing off the crop. "The flowers are really dense and packed in there."

Thu
10
Oct

In Montana, growing hemp can still be risky for farmers

Montana farmers planted 22,000 acres of hemp last year — the most of any U.S. state. Many are turning to the recently legalized option because trade wars continue to hurt profits on traditional crops like wheat and barley. But now many Montana hemp farmers allege they weren’t paid what they were promised. The result is a multi-million dollar lawsuit against the company they partnered with. 

Dean Nelson is among that group waiting to learn the fate of his hemp crop. Roughly 1,000 bales still line his fields, each one about 1,400 pounds.

Tue
01
Oct

Hemp licenses issued by State 2019

  • The 29 U.S. states having reporting licensed hemp cultivation acreage total nearly half a million acres in combined cultivation land area, a massive increase over 2018's combined U.S. total of just over 100,000 acres.
  • Colorado leads the nation in hemp cultivation and processing land area with over 80,000 acres reported.
  • Oregon, Kentucky, Tennessee, and Montana lead in hemp program expansion efforts.
  • Tennessee leads in total hemp licenses issued in 2019.
  • At least 70% of the 2019 U.S. hemp harvest is intended for extract production.
  • California is poised to be the top-producing hemp state for both conventional and organic production as thousands of acres have already been planted in 2019.
Wed
17
Apr

Montana House backs major medical marijuana law reform

Montana continues to tweak its medical marijuana system, which was first written into law 15 years ago. On Monday, the state’s House passed Senate Bill 265, which makes important changes to the program including a temporary tax increase, the institution of doctor recommendations by phone, and the “untethering” of patients.

Fri
29
Mar

Lawmakers just said no to recreational marijuana in Montana

A bill to legalize recreational marijuana use for Montanans 18 and older failed to advance Thursday from a state House committee.

Tue
08
Jan

Hemp legalization could mean big business for Montana

Hemp is poised to grow into a major industry in Montana.

After President Donald Trump's signature decriminalized hemp cultivation Thursday, Montana is looking at what could be a big market — from pharmaceuticals to animal feed — said Ben Thomas of the Montana Department of Agriculture.

“This removed a lot of the restrictions around the market,” Thomas said.

Until now, hemp cultivation was limited mainly to research and pilot programs. 

Mon
29
Oct

Higher costs, local bans have Montana's small medical marijuana producers scaling up or shutting down

Kendra Langford Shaw loved running a small business.

It was a part-time endeavor with only six customers. Her product was medical marijuana, which she felt her customers relied on for their well-being.

When new regulations brought more costs in 2018, she thought things still might pencil out. She worked to comply with new state laws and had an inspection of her grow operation in the basement of her Billings home. She told her cardholders they had to look elsewhere.

Tue
11
Sep

Trump Tuesday: 'Plaid shirt guy' and his facial expressions go viral during a Trump rally after being asked to leave

Going viral and becoming a meme is pretty easy in the age of Trump: Just stand behind The Orange One at his rallies and — this part's key — make silly faces during his speech. Doing so will turn all eyeballs from The Donald to you. It'll also get your removed from the rally courtesy of the Secret Service. But, worth it!

Mon
03
Sep

Montana collects $1.8 million in medical cannabis tax revenue in first year

In its first year of taxing the medical marijuana industry, Montana raked in over a million dollars in revenue.

The state of Montana collected $1.8 million in the first year of taxing the medical marijuana industry, according to government officials. The Montana Department of Revenue also reported that the state’s medicinal cannabis businesses had generated approximately $45 million in sales during the first year of taxation.

State revenue director Gene Walborn told local media that the department was happy with the rollout of taxes on Montana’s medical marijuana industry.

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