This week was the busiest week so far in the legislative session. The deadline for committees to vote on bills assigned to them was Tuesday February 5.
Deadline day began for me with a Judiciary A committee meeting at 8:30 am where we discussed and voted on approximately 10 bills. Most of these bills had been on the committee calendar for several days so members had ample opportunity to read and understand the bills before the meeting. But as always, there are bills that show up late on the calendar which require quickly reading over the bill, asking questions and listening to explanations before the committee votes.
One important bill discussed was HB581, Mississippi Terroristic Threats Law. On the surface this bill seems like a good idea but after questioning the bill author and committee chairman, I expressed concerns about the bill. The bill passed out of committee and will move to the full House for debate. During the week I have worked with other representatives to draft an amendment to improve the bill. Hopefully the amendment that will fix the problems I believe exist in this bill will be accepted by the House during debate on the floor.
The day ended for me at approximately 6:00 pm at the conclusion of the Drug Policy meeting. In this meeting I attempted to amend HB1542, Controlled substances; revise Schedules I, II, and V. The amendment I offered was to remove Industrial Hemp from Mississippi’s schedule of illegal drugs. In January of this year President Trump signed the US Farm Bill which removed hemp from the federal controlled substance law. If we follow the federal government our farmers will be allowed to grow industrial hemp.
One important point everyone should understand, HEMP is NOT MARIJUANA! Hemp can not be smoked, has no properties that will get anyone high, and marijuana can NOT be grown near hemp because the cross pollination will ruin the marijuana.
Hemp is one of the oldest industrial crops in history. George Washington was a hemp farmer. Hemp fiber is used for rope, clothes, a multitude of products and hemp oil is used in hundreds of products from soap, lip balm and salves.
Hemp is expected to be a $20 Billion industry within the next 3 years. Arkansas, Tennessee, Alabama, Kentucky, and Florida have changed their laws to allow farmers to grow hemp. Mississippi must allow our farmers to participate in this growing and profitable industry.
Wednesday and Thursday of this past week were busy with action on the House floor. So far this legislative session I’ve cast approximately 200 votes for the people of District 6. I take each vote very seriously and do my best to vote in accordance with the principles and values the people elected me to uphold.
On the website www.BillTrack50.com you can track every vote cast during the legislative session.
If you have any questions, concerns, or request, please email me at email@example.com or give me a call on my cell phone at (901) 275-4191.
It is an honor to serve you, and I humbly ask for your prayers as we seek to make decisions that help the people of our state.
To learn more about me or my campaign visit my website, www.DanaCriswellforMississippi.com.