We have been closely tracking the introduction and movement of AB 228, a crucial bill that would legalize the retail sale of food, beverages, and cosmetics containing industrial hemp-based CBD and other derivatives, in Sacramento.
Like others in the industry, we were fairly optimistic that California’s legislature would pass AB 228 in September 2019, legalizing the sale of hemp-derived CBD products and ending enforcement efforts by the California Department of Public Health (CDPH). However, in a surprising turn of events, despite not receiving a single no vote and encountering minimal opposition, the Senate Appropriations Committee “held” AB 228, effectively killing the bill.
In addition to calling out the enforcement actions by state and local regulators which are severely limiting Californians’ access to hemp-derived CBD products, bill sponsor Assembly member Cecilia Aguiar-Curry’s statement, in response to the Senate Appropriations Committee’s action to hold AB 228 on Suspense, also expressed confidence in having a bill ready for Governor Newsom to sign come January:
“Regardless of the action in Senate Appropriations today, I am confident that we will have a bill ready for the Governor to sign at the beginning of next year, so that our California hemp farmers and producers of hemp-CBD can take advantage of this new multi-billion dollar opportunity.”Assemblymember Cecilia Aguiar-Curry Responds to the Senate Appropriations Committee Holding AB 228 on Suspense
Meanwhile, the U.S. Hemp Roundtable, Vote Hemp and several California-based hemp groups are urging supporters to contact their state legislators with two urgent requests:
1. Showing Support for AB 228 or Similar Legislation:
To contact the leaders of the Senate Appropriations Committee, where the bill was held, to allow consideration this month on AB 228 or a similar bill.
2. Urging the Governor’s Office to End Enforcement Actions
To contact the Governor to urge him to instruct the California Department of Public Health to cease and desist on any enforcement actions while the legislature deliberates. We cannot allow them to continue to cast a pall on this thriving industry.
We encourage you to go to the U.S. Hemp Roundtable’s Action Center and send these messages to your California state representative and Governor by simply sharing your name, email, and zip code.