Throughout the United States, the laws regarding marijuana have changed significantly in recent years. After President Trump’s December 2018 Farm Bill left hemp sale and production regulation up to state lawmakers, several states have taken steps to address the legality of marijuana and related products, and Texas is no exception. With all of these recent changes, it can be difficult to keep track of what is and is not legal. That is why it is crucial to stay up to date on all legal changes and contact a drug charge defense attorney if you are facing possible criminal charges.
Texas House Bill 1325
This past June, Governor Abbott signed House Bill 1325 into law, legalizing the commercial production of hemp in the state of Texas. However, before this law can go into effect, the Texas Department of Agriculture needs to submit a “state hemp plan” to the USDA. Farmers hoping to get approval to grow hemp will need to submit growing permits with the Texas Department of Agriculture, which expects to begin accepting applications at the start of 2020. While it seems like the government has a solid plan for implementing this new legislation, lines may become blurred regarding what is considered legal in Texas.
Hemp Versus Marijuana
Hemp and marijuana often get grouped together due to the presence of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) in the plants. THC is known for its intoxicating effects, and it is what causes the "high" from smoking or consuming marijuana. The primary difference between hemp and marijuana is the THC content found within the two products. Hemp has extremely low levels of THC, eliminating the psychoactive quality of its counterpart, and it is typically used for its cannabidiol (CBD) content, which has calming side effects. Marijuana contains more than .3 percent THC, and possession of this drug continues to be illegal in Texas. The plants look and smell very similar, making it difficult for law enforcement to distinguish between the two plants without adequate laboratory analysis. It is important for consumers to note the difference between the two products to avoid criminal charges.
Contact a Karnes City Criminal Defense Lawyer
With recent changes to the laws regarding marijuana, it can be difficult to keep the legal details straight. Though some surrounding states have legalized marijuana, possession of this drug continues to be illegal in Texas. The growth of hemp may soon be allowed, but only with the proper licensing and when following specific rules. At BCP Criminal Defense Attorneys, we are well-versed in the marijuana laws in Texas, and we can help you understand how these laws apply to you. If you are facing drug charges of any kind, contact our Floresville drug crimes attorneys at 830-769-1010 for a free consultation.