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House kills hemp legislation, so even transporting it across Idaho is still illegal

The Idaho House has voted to kill hemp legislation after the Senate added amendments that lawmakers say turned it into a decision to create a state plan for hemp rather than go with a federal plan yet to be released.

The full House on Thursday accepted the recommendation of the House Transportation and Defense Committee not to agree with amendments added by the Senate.

The original bill was intended to allow hemp-loaded trucks to cross Idaho — where hemp is illegal — because the 2018 federal farm bill legalized industrial hemp.

Republican Rep. Judy Boyle says the federal plan has a better chance of allowing Idaho farmers to start growing hemp next spring, and efforts to create a state plan could get bogged down.

Law enforcement officials have been concerned that legalizing hemp in Idaho could hinder efforts to enforce the state’s prohibition on marijuana. This year’s inaction by the Legislature means that hemp and marijuana are still classified the same way in Idaho: You can’t have either.