Bill Summaries: S315 NORTH CAROLINA FARM ACT OF 2019-20. (NEW)

Tracking:
  • Summary date: Jun 15 2020 - More information

    AN ACT TO MAKE VARIOUS CHANGES TO THE AGRICULTURAL LAWS OF THE STATE. SL 2020-18. Enacted June 12, 2020. Effective June 12, 2020, except as otherwise provided.


  • Summary date: Jun 3 2020 - More information

    Conference report #2 makes the following changes to the 10th edition. Note: Conference report #1, adopted by the Senate 10/28/2020, was withdrawn by the Senate on 5/27/2020.

    Eliminates the content of previous Sections 1 through 14, modifying the Industrial Hemp Commission and Hemp Program, establishing the NC Hemp Commission and Hemp Program, and requiring a quarterly smokeable hemp study report. Eliminates all coordinating provisions, including civil and criminal penalties, relating to the proposed changes to the hemp program. Makes conforming organizational changes to the remaining content of the act.

    Modifies the remaining content of the act as follows.

    Section 1

    Changes the effective date of proposed GS 62-193, Disposition of certain unused easements. Now applies to easements acquired on or after October 1, 2020 (was, October 1, 2019).

    Section 2

    Changes the effective date of proposed GS 20-150(e1), establishing right-of-way for left-turning farm equipment. Now applies to offenses committed on or after December 1, 2020 (was, December 1, 2019).

    Section 5

    Modifies the proposed changes to GS 99E-30 to no longer include shooting sports in the definition of agritourism activity. Makes conforming changes.

    Amends the proposed changes to GS 153A-340 to no longer include specified shooting sports in the definition of agritourism with regards to buildings being used for agritourism qualifying as a bona fide farm purpose.

    Provides a savings clause for existing agreements and settlements with local governments, previously issued permits and zoning decisions, and any pending or ongoing litigation, notwithstanding the proposed changes to GS 99E-30 and GS 153A-340.

    Makes clarifying changes to proposed GS 153A-145.8 and GS 160A-203.2, regarding the regulation of catering on bona fide farms, to prohibit counties and cities from requiring businesses located on a property used for bona fide farm purposes that provides on- and off-site catering services to obtain a permit to do so (previously, provided for the business providing catering services on- and off-site from the bona fide farm property).

    Section 9

    Amends the proposed change to the sunset provision of the NC Food Innovation Lab Committee set forth in SL 2017-57, providing for a sunset of January 1, 2021, rather than January 1, 2020.

    Section 10

    Modifies the effective date of proposed GS 139-8.2, concerning confidential information collected by soil and water conservation districts. Now effective October 1, 2020, rather than October 1, 2019.

    Section 12

    Extends the reporting deadline for the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) and the Department of Environmental Resources to report on funding overlaps between specified water resources development grant funding, from September 30, 2019, to September 30, 2020.

    Section 14

    Extends the reporting deadline for the Agriculture and Forestry Awareness Study Commission's dairy study from May 1, 2020, to December 1, 2021.

    Section 15

    Adds the following new provisions. Directs that nutrient offset credits must be applied to a wastewater permit by applying the TMDL transport factor to the permitted wastewater discharge and to the nutrient offset credits. Applies only to wastewater discharge permit applications for a local government located in the Neuse River Basin with a customer base of fewer than 15,000 connections. Expires when the permanent rule, as required by the act below, becomes effective.

    Directs DEQ to begin the modeling necessary to determine new transport zones and delivery factors for the Neuse River Basin for point source discharges and nutrient offset credits by August 1, 2020 in conjunction with affected parties. Requires the Environmental Management Commission to use DEQ's modeling and other information provided in the public comment period to adopt new transport zones and delivery factors by rule. Allows EMC to adopt temporary implementing rules.

    Changes the act's short title.


  • Summary date: Oct 24 2019 - More information

    Conference report makes the following changes to the 10th edition.

    Sections 1 through 7

    Reinstates the qualifications of licensed cultivators and handlers of hemp set forth in GS 106-568.53A under Article 50E as they appeared in the 7th edition to include extending licensee rights and privileges to otherwise qualifying spouses of licensees, and making the license transferable to otherwise qualified family members of the licensee upon death or incapacity.

    Amends proposed GS 106-568.55A, concerning bond requirements for hemp handlers, to reinstate the exemption for handlers who process only hemp grown by the handler as the exemption appeared in the 7th edition.

    Modifies the proposed changes to GS 90-87, concerning the defined terms applicable to the NC Controlled Substances Act, Article 5, GS Chapter 90. No longer enacts definitions for the terms hemp, hemp product, or smokable hemp. Amends the proposed changes to the defined term marijuana to exclude hemp, hemp products, and smokable hemp from the term, as defined in GS 106-568.51, as amended, when the hemp is produced and used in compliance with the Article and rules adopted by the NC Hemp Commission (Commission) (similar to the changes proposed in the 8th edition, though the 8th edition also excluded hemp extracts).

    Amends the proposed changes to GS 90-94 to also exclude smokable hemp from the Schedule VI controlled substance, tetrahydrocannabinols (previously, excluded hemp and hemp products only, which were defined to exclude smokable hemp).

    Changes the effective date of the proposed changes to GS 90-87 and GS 90-94, now making the provisions effective December 1, 2019, rather than May 1, 2020.

    Changes the effective date of the proposed changes to GS 106-568.57(d), as enacted, which removes the sale of smokable hemp to minors from the Class 2 misdemeanor defined therein, now making the change effective June 1, 2020, rather than May 1, 2020.

    Further amends GS 105-113.106 to include smokable hemp (as defined in the specified statute) in the definition of hemp, as the term applies to the act's proposed tax provisions, which exclude lawfully possessed hemp from unauthorized substance taxes levied under Article 2D. Makes these changes to both the statute, as amended, which becomes effective July 1, 2019, as amended, and to the statute, as amended, which becomes effective July 1, 2021.

    Amends the proposed changes to SL 2015-299, as amended. Now provides that Section 2 of that act, which amends the definition of marijuana under the NC Controlled Substances Act, to exclude industrial hemp, expires December 1, 2019, rather than May 1, 2020.

    Sections 8 through 11

    Amends proposed GS 106-568.63 to reinstate the qualifications for spouses and family members of licensed cultivators and handlers of hemp under new Article 50F as they appeared in the 7th edition (identical to those reinstated to Article 50E, GS 106-568.53A).

    Amends proposed GS 106-568.64 to reinstate the exemption for handlers who process only hemp grown by the handler as the exemption appeared in the 7th edition (identical to that reinstated to Article 50E, GS 106-568.55A).

    Adds to the civil and criminal penalties set forth in new Article 50F. Now allows the Commissioner of Agriculture (Commissioner) to assess a civil penalty of up to $2,500 per violation to any person who knowingly or intentionally manufactures, delivers, sells, or possesses smokable hemp, except for hemp plants or parts of a hemp plant grown or handled by a licensee for processing or manufacturing into a legal hemp product or sale or delivery to either an individual who possesses a valid hemp license from the Department of Agriculture (Department) or a person outside the state who is allowed to receive it under the laws of that jurisdiction (this civil penalty was not included in the 10th edition; earlier editions contained similar provisions but did not also explicitly exclude sales or deliveries of smokable hemp to other licensees from the civil penalty). Makes it a Class 1 misdemeanor to knowingly or intentionally manufacture, deliver, sell, or possess smokable hemp, except for hemp plants or parts of hemp grown or handled by a licensee for processing or manufacturing into a legal hemp product or for sale or delivery to either an individual who possesses a valid hemp license from the Department or a person outside the state who is allowed to receive it under the laws of that jurisdiction (this criminal penalty was not included in the 10th edition; earlier editions contained similar provisions but did not also explicitly exclude sales or deliveries of smokable hemp to other licensees from the criminal offense).

    Section 12

    Adds to new GS 106-139(f), which mandates the Board of Agriculture (Board) is to adopt current good manufacturing practices in operations for cannabinoid-related compounds derived from hemp. Specifies required content of the rules pertaining to labeling of cannabinoid-related compounds, including requirements for product labels to indicate total cannabinoid content and active cannabinoid content doses recommended, and a barcode that when scanned provides access to a certificate of analysis (makes these changes to the statute, as amended, which becomes effective January 1, 2020, and expires July 1, 2021, and the statute, as amended, which becomes effective July 1, 2021). Makes organizational changes.

    Now requires the Board to adopt temporary rules to implement Section 12 of the act by April 1, 2020, rather than November 1, 2019.

    Section 14

    Adds civil and criminal penalties to Article 50E, GS Chapter 106, as amended, identical to those enacted to new Article 50F, GS Chapter 106. Makes the new penalties effective June 1, 2020, and applicable to violations or offenses occurring on or after that date (these provisions were not included in the 10th edition; earlier editions contained similar provisions, though they did not explicitly exclude sales or deliveries of smokable hemp to other licensees from the penalties, and also provided different effective dates).

    Changes the effective date of the proposed changes to GS 106-568.51, which explicitly excludes smokable hemp from the term hemp product as the term is used in Article 50E, to now make the changes effective June 1, 2020 (previously, effective May 1, 2020).

    Section 20

    Amends the proposed changes to GS 153A-340 to no longer include compliance with local zoning and development ordinances in the qualifications of shooting sports, which are proposed to be included in the definition of agritourism as the term relates to determining whether buildings or structures are used for bona fide farm purposes. No longer requires a majority of the county board of commissioners to determine a property's compliance with local zoning and development ordinances; however, requires a determination that the property is in compliance with guidelines adopted by the Wildlife Resources Commission (was, guidelines established by the Wildlife Resources Commission).

    Adds a savings clause to clarify that the proposed changes to GS 99E-30 and GS 153A-340, both of which modify agritourism definitions, do not affect any existing agreement or settlement with a local government, any permit or zoning decision previously issued by a local government, or any pending or ongoing litigation. 

    Makes further technical and conforming changes.


  • Summary date: Aug 21 2019 - More information

    House amendments to the 9th edition make the following changes.

    Amendment #1 adds new Section 11.5 to the act. Amends GS 15A-974, concerning the exclusion or suppression of unlawfully obtained evidence. Prohibits suppression of evidence obtained as the result of a search that was supported by probable cause at the time of the search if suppression is sought solely on the basis of a subsequent determination that either (1) a substance believed to be a controlled substance at the time of the search was not a controlled substance or (2) the presence of a controlled substance at the time of the search was not a violation of law. Applies to motions to suppress filed on or after December 1, 2019.

    Amendment #3 adds new Section 30 to the act. Directs the Agriculture and Forestry Awareness Study Commission (AFAS Commission) to study the policy options to support the state's dairy industry. Requires the study to include examining the following available options: the reestablishment of the NC Milk Commission, the creation of a tax credit for producers, the creation of a fund to make grants or loans to improve operations' infrastructure, and the creation of a dairy promotion board or marketing program for dairies. Directs the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services to assist the AFAS Commission as requested. Requires the Commission to report to the General Assembly by May 1, 2020.

    Amendment #4 further amends GS 153A-340(b)(2a), concerning buildings or structures used for agritourism deemed a bona fide farm purpose. Modifies and adds to the provision defining agritourism to include shooting sports in a county with a population of fewer than 110,000 people. Now defines agritourism to include shooting sports on properties that are located in a county with a population of fewer than 110,000 people, comply with guidelines for design and site evaluation as established by the Wildlife Resources Commission, and comply with local zoning and development ordinances. Requires a majority vote of the county commissioners to determine whether a property used for shooting sports is in compliance with the Wildlife Resources Commission's guidelines and local zoning and development ordinances. 

    Amendment #5 modifies various directives and authorities set forth in the act as follows. Amends Section 6 to establish a deadline of December 1, 2020, by which the NC Hemp Commission must adopt permanent rules to implement Section 1 of the act, which amends Article 50E of GS Chapter 106. Additionally, modifies the proposed changes to GS 106-139 set forth in Section 12 to mandate, rather than permit, the Board of Agriculture to adopt rules to establish current good manufacturing practices in manufacturing, packaging, labeling, or holding operations for cannabinoid-related compounds derived from hemp. Similarly, establishes a deadline of November 1, 2020, by which the Board of Agriculture must adopt permanent rules to implement Section 12 of the act, regarding the regulation of cannabinoid-related compounds. 


  • Summary date: Aug 20 2019 - More information

    House committee substitute to the 8th edition makes the following changes.

    Changes the definitions of the terms hemp products and smokable hemp set forth in GS 106-568.51, applicable to Article 50E, NC Hemp Commission. Now defines hemp products to include oils, tinctures, vapor products, and smokable hemp (previously, explicitly excluded smokable hemp from the term). Also, defines hemp products to include food intended for animal or human consumption unless prohibited by the US FDA or the US Department of Agriculture (rather than as approved by those entities). Now defines smokable hemp to mean harvested raw or dried hemp plant material, including hemp buds or hemp flowers, hemp cigars, and hemp cigarettes (previously defined to mean a product that does not exceed the federally defined THC level for hemp in a form that allows THC to be introduced into the human body by inhalation of smoke, including hemp buds, hemp flowers, whole or ground raw hemp plant material, hemp cigars, and hemp cigarettes). No longer defines hemp extract

    Increases the membership of the NC Hemp Commission set forth in GS 106-568.52 from nine to eleven members. Modifies current member qualifications to include one member (rather than two) appointed by the Governor who is a full-time or Emeritus faculty member of NC State University (was, of a State land grant university) who regularly works in agricultural science or research. Adds to the member qualifications: one member appointed by the Governor who is a full-time or Emeritus faculty member of NC A&T University who regularly works in agricultural science or research; one member appointed by the Commissioner of Agriculture, recommended by the Office for the Small and Minority Farm Program; and one member appointed by the Commissioner of Agriculture who is a full-time farmer, recommended by NC A&T University. 

    Makes a technical change to GS 106-568.53A, regarding licensure qualifications.

    Amends proposed GS 106-568.58 to no longer explicitly provide that no license is required to possess, handle, transport, or sell hemp extracts. Maintains that no license is required to possess, handle, transport or sell hemp products, as the term is now defined under Article 50E. Changes the statute's title.

    Modifies the proposed changes to GS 90-87 to enact definitions for the terms hemp, hemp product, and smokable hemp, applicable to the NC Controlled Substances Act, similar to those set forth in Article 50E of GS Chapter 106, as amended, with the following exceptions. Defines hemp and hemp product by setting a specific THC level, rather than referencing a federally defined THC level, for hemp. Additionally, defines hemp product to exclude smokable hemp. Amends the definition set forth for marijuana to now include smokable hemp and exclude hemp products (previously, excluded hemp, hemp products, hemp extracts and smokable hemp, when the hemp is produced and used in compliance with Article 5, the NC Controlled Substances Act, and rules adopted by the Hemp Commission). 

    Amends the exception set forth for tetrahydrocannibinols in hemp, hemp products, hemp extracts, or smokable hemp from being included as a schedule VI controlled substance under GS 90-94, to now only except tetrahydrocannibinols in hemp or hemp products, as defined in Article 50E, GS Chapter 106.

    Changes the effective date of the proposed changes to GS 90-87 and GS 90-94, and proposed GS 90-94.5, now making those provisions effective June 1, 2020 (was, effective on the later of either December 1, 2019, or 30 days after the effective date of specified federal regulations). Additionally, eliminates the proposed sunset of those provisions on July 1, 2021 (reinstated in the previous edition).

    Effective June 1, 2020, further amends the definition of hemp product under Article 50E of GS Chapter 106 to exclude smokable hemp.

    Eliminates the immunity provisions set forth in proposed GS 90-94.5, which set forth immunity for hemp licensees possessing, manufacturing, or delivering a commodity cultivated by the licensee that exceeds the federally defined THC level unless the violation is intentional. Instead, sets forth the following. Provides immunity from the specified controlled substance offenses for hemp licensees or other individuals authorized by another state or the US Department of Agriculture to possess, manufacture, sell or deliver, or possess with intent to do the same, hemp or smokable hemp so long as the sale or delivery is made to another hemp licensee or authorized person. Provides immunity for a hemp licensee to negligently possess, manufacture, sell or deliver, or possess with intent to do the same, a commodity cultivated by the licensee that exceeds the specified THC level. Provides for a penalty for negligent violation to be determined by the Hemp Commission. Changes the effective date of the immunity provisions, now providing that the provisions apply to violations or offenses committed on or after December 1, 2019 (was, effective on the later of either December 1, 2019, or 30 days after the effective date of specified federal regulations).

    Effective December 1, 2019, enacts GS 106-568.57(d), making it a Class 2 misdemeanor to sell smokable hemp or vapor products that contain hemp to a person less than 18 years old (similar to a provision eliminated in the previous edition). Sunsets the provision on July 1, 2021. Effective May 1, 2020, amends GS 106-578.57(d), to no longer include the sale of smokable hemp in the misdemeanor offense.

    Modifies the proposed tax provisions to no longer include hemp extracts in the definition of hemp set forth in GS 105-113.106.

    Amends the proposed changes to Section 4 of SL 2015-199. Now provides that Section 2 of that act, which amends the definition of marijuana under the NC Controlled Substances Act to exclude industrial hemp, expires May 1, 2020, and the remainder of the act, which enacts Article 50E of GS Chapter 106, expires on the later of December 1, 2019, or 30 days after the effective date of specified federal regulations (previously, provided for the entire act to expire on the later of December 1, 2019, or 30 days after the effective date of specified federal regulations).

    Makes the following modifications to new Article 50F, NC Hemp Program, of GS Chapter 106, effective July 1, 2021.

    Amends the definition of handling under the new Article to include transportation of hemp plants from a licensee to a person authorized by another jurisdiction. Makes technical changes. Makes identical changes to the terms hemp product (which does not include smokable hemp) and smokable hemp as those made to Article 50E, as amended. Additionally, no longer defines hemp extract

    Amends the civil penalties set forth under the new Article, effective July 1, 2021, to no longer permit the Commissioner to assess a civil penalty of up to $2,500 for knowingly or intentionally manufacturing, delivering, selling, or possessing smokable hemp, except for hemp plants or parts of a hemp plant grown or handled by a licensee for processing or manufacturing into a legal hemp product.

    Modifies the criminal penalty provisions set forth under the new Article, effective July 1, 2021, to make it a Class 2 misdemeanor to sell vapor products that contain hemp to a person less than 18 years old (identical to the provisions of Article 50E, as amended, effective May 1, 2020). No longer makes it a Class 1 misdemeanor to knowingly or intentionally manufacture, deliver, sell, or possess smokable hemp, except for hemp plants or parts of a hemp plant grown or handled by a licensee for processing or manufacturing into a legal hemp product.

    Makes identical changes to proposed GS 106-568.68 as those made to proposed GS 106-568.58 concerning the transportation of hemp products.

    Eliminates the proposed changes to GS 90-87 and GS 90-94, and proposed GS 90-94.5, effective July 1, 2021. Instead, amends GS 90-94.5, as enacted, to make conforming changes to Article 50F to refer to the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (Department) rather than the Hemp Commission. Makes further conforming changes.

    Makes identical changes to the proposed tax provisions set forth in GS 105-113.106, effective July 1, 2021, to no longer include hemp extracts in the definition of hemp.

    Amends the proposed definition of cannabinoid-related compounds set forth in GS 106-121 to exclude smokable hemp (previously, removed by the 8th edition). Sunsets the proposed definition on July 1, 2021, and enacts an identical definition, effective July 1, 2021, with a corrected statutory cross-reference for the definition of smokable hemp to new Article 50F. Makes conforming and technical changes.

    Eliminates the proposed civil and criminal penalties of Article 50E in proposed GS 106-568.56(a)(5) and GS 106-568.57(d), as set forth in the 5th and 8th editions, which would have been effective December 1, 2020. No longer permits the Commissioner to assess a civil penalty of up to $2,500 for knowingly or intentionally manufacturing, delivering, selling, or possessing smokable hemp, except for hemp plants or parts of a hemp plant grown or handled by a licensee for processing or manufacturing into a legal hemp product. No longer makes it a Class 1 misdemeanor to knowingly or intentionally manufacture, deliver, sell, or possess smokable hemp, except for hemp plants or parts of a hemp plant grown or handled by a licensee for processing or manufacturing into a legal hemp product.

    Adds a new directive requiring the State Bureau of Investigation (SBI) and any other appropriate law enforcement agencies and district attorneys to study the feasibility and effectiveness of implementing a field test to distinguish between hemp and marijuana. Also requires the SBI to study conditions under which a field test that is not accurate to within a specified THC concentration by weight can be useful in establishing probable cause for a search. Directs the SBI to report to the AFAS Commission and the specified NCGA committee by January 1, 2020. Additionally, now requires the SBI to notify the AFAS Commission in writing when a field test with an analytical capability to distinguish between hemp and marijuana has been evaluated and approved by a national accreditation body (previously, when the US DEA has adopted an approved immediate testing method to determine whether hemp is within the federally defined THC level). Makes conforming changes.

    Eliminates the directive reinstated by the 8th edition regarding the Environmental Management Commission's implementation of 15A NCAC 02D .1806 (Control and prohibition of odorous emissions), as the provisions appeared in the 5th edition, which required the EMC to classify facilities that store products grown, produced, or generated on one or more agricultural operations and are renewable resources under specified state law, as agricultural operations that are exempt from the identified rule's requirements. 

    Modifies the proposed changes to GS 153A-340(b)(2a) to no longer explicitly include shooting in the definition of agritourism as it relates to a building or structure being used for a bona fide farm purpose. Instead, more specifically defines agritourism under the subdivision to include shooting sports in a county with a population of fewer than 110,000. No longer requires properties being used for shooting sports to comply with specified guidelines of the Wildlife Resource Commission. 

    Reinstates the proposed changes to the sunset provision of the NC Food Innovation Lab Committee set forth in SL 2017-57, providing for a sunset of January 1, 2020, rather than January 1, 2025 (previously, eliminated by the 8th edition).

    Eliminates the directive reinstated by the 8th edition which requires the Office of the State Auditor to audit all State funds ever paid to the Resources Institute for the Initiative through the Clean Water Management Trust Fund and Water Resources Development Grants for the Environmental Quality Incentives Program no later than June 1, 2020, and directing the Director and Board of Trustees of the Clean Water Management Trust Fund and DEQ to seek recoupment of any identified overpayment of State funds based on the audit’s findings.

    Maintains the act's severability clause and effective date provisions. 


  • Summary date: Jul 25 2019 - More information

    House committee substitute to the 7th edition makes the following changes.

    Changes the definition of smokable hemp set forth in GS 106-568.51, applicable to Article 50E, NC Hemp Commission. Now defines the term to mean a product that does not exceed the federally defined THC level for hemp in a form that allows THC to be introduced into the human body by inhalation of smoke, including hemp buds, hemp flowers, whole or ground raw hemp plant material, hemp cigars, and hemp cigarettes (identical to the definition set forth in the 5th and 6th editions; previously, defined as harvested raw or dried hemp plant material, in a form intended to allow THC to be introduced into the human body by inhalation of smoke, including hemp buds or hemp flowers, hemp cigars, and hemp cigarettes, but excluding hemp extracts).

    Eliminates the proposed member qualfiication modifications for the NC Hemp Commission set forth in GS 106-568.52 (previously, amended the qualifications to require one member from NC A&T, one member that is an historically underserved African-American small farmer, and one member recommended by the Small and Minority Farm Program). 

    Eliminates proposed subsections (g) and (h) of GS 106-568.53A, which extended the privileges of hemp cultivator or handler licenses to the spouse of licensees, and established the licenses to be transferrable. Makes conforming organizational changes.

    Modifies proposed GS 106-568.55A to prohibit the Hemp Commission from issuing a license to handle hemp to any person (rather than any person who processes hemp purchased from a cultivator) without satisfying the bonding requirements specified. No longer exempts from the bond requirements handlers who process only hemp grown by the handler.

    Eliminates proposed GS 106-578.57(d), which made it a Class 2 misdemeanor to sell hemp, hemp products, or hemp extracts to a person less than 18 years old.

    Makes technical changes to proposed GS 106-568.59, concerning the NC Hemp Program Fund.

    Modifies the proposed changes to GS 90-87 to no longer enact definitions for the terms hemp, hemp extract, hemp product, and smokable hemp, applicable to the NC Controlled Substances Act. Additionally, eliminates the proposed changes to the term marijuana, which defined the term to include smokable hemp and exclude hemp, when under the control of a licensed cultivator or handler, hemp products, and hemp extracts. Instead, amends the definition set forth for marijuana to exclude hemp, hemp products, hemp extracts, and smokable hemp as defined in GS 106-568.51 (Article 50E of GS Chapter 106), when the hemp is produced and used in compliance with Article 5, the NC Controlled Substances Act, and rules adopted by the Hemp Commission (identical to the definition provided in the 5th edition). 

    Amends the exception set forth for tetrahydrocannibinols in hemp products and hemp extracts from being included as a schedule VI controlled substance, to also except tetrahydrocannibinols in hemp and smokable hemp, as defined in Article 50E, GS Chapter 106 (identical to the exceptions set forth in the 5th edition).

    Changes the effective date of the proposed changes to GS 90-87 and GS 90-94, and proposed GS 90-94.5, now making those provisions effective on the later of either December 1, 2019, or 30 days after the effective date of specified federal regulations. Additionally, reinstates the proposed sunset of those provisions on July 1, 2021 (identical to the provisions set forth in the 5th and 6th editions; previously, effective December 1, 2019, with no sunset). 

    Makes further conforming changes.

    Makes the following modifications to new Article 50F, NC Hemp Program, of GS Chapter 106, effective July 1, 2021.

    Makes identical changes to the defined term smokable hemp as those made to the defined term applicable to Article 50E (identical to the definition set forth in the 5th and 6th editions; previously, defined to mean a material, compound, mixture, or preparation that allows THC to be introduced into the human body by inhalation of smoke, including whole or ground raw hemp plant material, including hemp buds, hemp flowers, hemp cigars, and hemp cigarettes). 

    Makes identical changes to the proposed qualifications for licensed cultivators or handlers of hemp as those made to Article 50E, deleting subsection (f) and (g), which extended the privileges of hemp cultivator or handler licenses to the spouse of licensees, and established the licenses to be transferrable. Makes conforming organizational changes. 

    Makes identical changes to the proposed bonding requirements for licensed cultivators or handlers of hemp as those made to Article 50E. Prohibits the Commissioner of Agriculture (Commissioner) from issuing a license to handle hemp to any person (rather than any person who processes hemp purchased from a cultivator) without satisfying the bonding requirements specified. No longer exempts from the bond requirements handlers who process only hemp grown by the handler.

    Adds to the civil penalties set forth under the new Article to permit the Commissioner to access a civil penalty of up to $2,500 for knowingly or intentionally manufacturing, delivering, selling, or possessing smokable hemp, except for hemp plants or parts of a hemp plant grown or handled by a licensee for processing or manufacturing into a legal hemp product (identical to the civil penalty provided in the 5th and 6th editions).

    Modifies the criminal penalty provisions set for under the new Article. Eliminates the proposed Class 2 misdemeanor established for selling hemp, hemp products, or hemp extracts to a person less than 18 years old. Now, makes it a Class 1 misdemeanor to knowingly or intentionally manufacture, deliver, sell, or possess smokable hemp, except for hemp plants or parts of a hemp plant grown or handled by a licensee for processing or manufacturing into a legal hemp product (identical to the criminal penalty provided in the 5th edition).

    Makes technical changes to the provisions concerning the NC Hemp Program Fund.

    Amends GS 90-87, GS 90-94, and enacts GS 90-94.5, effective July 1, 2021, similarly to the provisions set forth in Section 2 of the act, which sunset on July 1, 2021, with the following changes. Amends GS 90-87, now defining marijuana to exclude hemp, hemp products, hemp extracts, and smokable hemp as defined in the new Article (identical to the definition set forth in the 5th edition). Makes changes to new GS 90-94.5 to refer to the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (DACS) rather than the Hemp Commission, and to make statutory cross-references to the new Article.

    Makes further technical changes.

    Amends the proposed definition of cannabinoid-related compounds set forth in GS 106-121 to no longer exclude smokable hemp. Makes conforming and technical changes.

    Reinstates the proposed civil and criminal penalties of Article 50E in proposed GS 106-568.56(a)(5) and GS 106-568.57(d), as set forth in the 5th edition, identical to those added to new Article 50F. Permits the Commissioner to access a civil penalty of up to $2,500 for knowingly or intentionally manufacturing, delivering, selling, or possessing smokable hemp, except for hemp plants or parts of a hemp plant grown or handled by a licensee for processing or manufacturing into a legal hemp product. Makes it a Class 1 misdemeanor to knowingly or intentionally manufacture, deliver, sell, or possess smokable hemp, except for hemp plants or parts of a hemp plant grown or handled by a licensee for processing or manufacturing into a legal hemp product. Applies to offenses occurring on or after December 1, 2020.

    Reinstates the directives regarding the Environmental Management Commission's implementation of 15A NCAC 02D .1806 (Control and prohibition of odorous emissions), as the provisions appeared in the 5th edition. Requires the EMC to classify facilities that store products that are grown, produced, or generated on one or more agricultural operations and are renewable resources under specified state law, as agricultural operations that are exempt from the identified rule's requirements. 

    Modifies the proposed changes to GS 153A-340 to no longer explicitly require properties used for shooting sports to comply local zoning and development ordinances. Makes conforming changes.

    Eliminates the proposed changes to the sunset provision of the NC Food Innovation Lab Committee set forth in SL 2017-57 (previously, amended to sunset January 1, 2020, rather than January 1, 2025 under existing law).

    Modifies proposed GS 139-8.2 to no longer exclude from confidentiality complaints to a soil and water conservation district resulting in a determination that a violation of the law has occurred.

    Reinstates the following provisions as they appeared in the 5th and 6th editions.

    Amends GS 143-215.71 and GS 143B-135.238 to specify that projects cannot receive grant funding from both the Environmental Quality Incentives Program and the Clean Water Management Trust Fund.

    Directs the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) and the Department of Natural and Cultural Resources to jointly report to the specified NCGA committee by September 30, 2019, regarding funding overlaps between water resources development grant funding and Clean Water Management Trust Fund grants for the Western Stream Initiative (Initiative) and the efforts of the Departments to improve administration of grants for the Environmental Quality Incentives Program.

    Directs DEQ to develop performance management procedures for projects funded as part of the Initiative, including the collection and reporting of 10 specified measures for all projects receiving grant funding. Requires the Department of Natural and Cultural Resources to provide DEQ with the specified measures relevant to funding for the Initiative provided by the Clean Water Management Trust Fund. 

    Amends GS 143-215.72, establishing an annual reporting requirement for DEQ regarding grants for projects funded through the Initiative (defined as the portion of the federal Environmental Quality Incentives Program funding provided to the Western Stream Initiative for certain counties). Requires the report to be submitted to the specified NCGA committee and division by November 1, and requires the report to include measures of grant administration and grant implementation efficiency and effectiveness.

    Directs the Office of the State Auditor to audit all State funds ever paid to the Resources Institute for the Initiative through the Clean Water Management Trust Fund and Water Resources Development Grants for the Environmental Quality Incentives Program no later than June 1, 2020. Directs the Director and Board of Trustees of the Clean Water Management Trust Fund and DEQ to seek recoupment of any identified overpayment of State funds based on the audit’s findings.

    Maintains the act's severability clause and effective date provisions. 


  • Summary date: Jul 17 2019 - More information

    House committee substitute to the 6th edition makes the following changes. 

    Amends the proposed definition of smokable hemp set forth in GS 106-568.51, applicable to Article 50E, as amended, the NC Hemp Commission. Now defines the term to mean harvested raw or dried hemp plant material, in a form intended to allow THC to be introduced into the human body by inhalation of smoke, including hemp buds or hemp flowers, hemp cigars, and hemp cigarettes (previously, a product that does not exceed the federally defined THC level for hemp in a form that allows THC to be introduced into the human body by inhalation of smoke, including hemp buds, hemp flowers, whole or ground raw hemp plant material, hemp cigars, and hemp cigarettes). Now excludes hemp extracts from smokable hemp.

    Adds to the qualifications for licensed cultivators and handlers of hemp set out in GS 106-568.53A. Extends all rights and privileges granted to the licensee to the licensee's spouse so long as the spouse meets all other qualifications for licensure. Additionally, deems the license transferrable to a member of the licensee's immediate family upon the death or incapacity of the licensee, so long as the transferee meets all other qualifiications for licensure. Requires the NC Hemp Commission to modify the licensure to reflect the transfer to the transferee upon death of the licensee without the licensure applying for a new license. Requires the transferee to submit to and pay the NC Hemp Commission for an annual criminal background check if one is not currently on record. Makes identical additions to the licensure qualifications set forth in proposed GS 106-568.63, effective July 1, 2021, which mirrors those set forth in GS 106-568.53A.

    Amends GS 106-568.57, making it a Class 2 misdemeanor to sell hemp, hemp products, or hemp extracts to a person under 18 years old. Changes the effective date of the proposed changes to GS 106-568.57, making the changes effective December 1, 2019, and applicable to offenses committed on or after that date (no longer the later of that date or 30 days after the effective date of specified federal regulations being adopted).

    Amends GS 90-87 to modify the definition of marijuana under the Controlled Substances Act, Article 5, GS Chapter 90, now explicitly including smokable hemp in the defined term with no exceptions. Defines smokable hemp to mean harvested raw or dried hemp plant material, in a form intended to allow THC to be introduced into the human body by inhalation of smoke, including hemp buds or hemp flowers, hemp cigars, and hemp cigarettes; excludes hemp extracts. Now explicitly excludes from the term marijuana hemp held by a licensed hemp cultivator or handler, hemp products, or hemp extract (previously, excluded hemp products or hemp extracts, but included smokable hemp, except for hemp plants or parts of hemp plants grown or handled by a licensee for processing or manufacturing into a legal hemp product). Permits a licensed cultivator or licensed handler to possess raw hemp plant material for the purpose of selling the raw hemp plant material to a licensed handler or a person who may legally receive the raw hemp plant material in that person's jurisdiction, or processing the raw hemp plant material into a hemp product or hemp extract. Additionally, defines hemp and hemp extract. Defines hemp product to mean any product within a specified concentration of THC derived from or made by processing hemp plants or parts, including, but not limited to, cosmetics, personal care products, food intended for animal or human consumption as federally approved, cloth cordage, fiber, fuel, paint, paper, particleboard, plastics, and any product containing one or more hemp-derived cannabinoids, such as cannabidiol; excludes smokable hemp.

    Modifies the proposed changes to GS 90-94 to remove the proposed statutory cross-reference to the definitions of hemp products and hemp extracts.

    Changes the effective date of Section 2 of the act (amending GS 90-87 and GS 90-94, and enacting GS 90-94.5), making the changes effective December 1, 2019, and applicable to offenses committed on or after that date (no longer the later of that date or 30 days after the effective date of specified federal regulations being adopted). No longer sunsets Section 2 on July 1, 2021. Makes conforming changes.

    Amends the proposed definition of smokable hemp set forth in new GS 106-568.61, applicable to new Article 50F, NC Hemp Program. Now defines the term to mean a material, compound, mixture, or preparation (rather than a product) that allows THC to be introduced into the human body by inhalation of smoke. Adds that the term includes whole or ground raw hemp plant material, including hemp buds and hemp flowers.

    Modifies the civil penalties provisions set forth in proposed GS 106-568.66 to no longer provide a civil penalty for knowingly or intentionally manufacturing, delivering, selling or possessing smokable hemp. Instead, amends proposed GS 106-568.67, adding to the Article's criminal penalties. Makes it a Class 2 misdemeanor to sell hemp, hemp products, or hemp extracts to a person less than 18 years old (identical to the proposed changes to the criminal penalty provisions of Article 50E, GS 106-568.57).

    Eliminates proposed GS 106-568.56(a)(5), which permitted assessing a civil penalty for knowingly or intentionally manufacturing, delivering, selling, or possessing smokable hemp, effective December 1, 2019.

    Further amends GS 153A-340 to require properties used for shooting sports to also comply with local zoning and development ordinances.

    Amends proposed GS 139-8.2 to except from the confidentiality provisions complaints to a soil and water conservation district resulting in a determination that a violation of law has occurred.

    Deletes the changes to GS 143-215.71 and GS 143B-135.238 concerning duplicate funding for projects under the Environmental Quality Incentives Program.

    Eliminates the directive requiring the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) to develop performance management procedures for projects funded as part of the Western Stream Initiative. Makes conforming deletions of the reporting requirements, proposed GS 143-215.72(d)(3).

    Eliminates the directive requiring the Office of the State Auditor to conduct an audit of the Western Stream Initiative funding for projects managed by the Resource Institute.

    Eliminates the directive requiring the Environmental Review Commission to study matters related to decommissioning of utility-scale solar projects.


  • Summary date: Jul 1 2019 - More information

    House committee substitute to the 5th edition makes the following changes. 

    Amends the makeup of the Hemp Commission (Commission) set forth in GS 106-568.52, now requiring one of the two Governor-appointed members who is a full-time or Emeritus faculty member of a State land grant university who regularly works in the field of agricultural science or research to be appointed from NC A&T State University and reflect the spirit and relationship to the education and research for which the land grant program was established. Also now requires one of the two experienced farmer members appointed by the Commissioner of Agriculture to be a small farmer who is a historically underserved African-American farmer. Additionally, requires the member appointed by the Commissioner of Agriculture be recommended by the Small and Minority Farm Program (previously, required to be a professional agricultural consultant). 

    Amends proposed GS 106-568.55A, concerning bonding requirements for hemp handlers. Now limits the bonding requirements to hemp handlers who process hemp purchased from a cultivator. Additionally, exempts from the bonding requirements handlers who process only hemp grown by the handler. Makes identical changes to the bonding requirements set forth in proposed GS 106-568.64, effective July 1, 2021. Makes further clarifying changes to proposed GS 106-568.64.

    Modifies proposed GS 106-658.58 to change the statutory numbering to GS 106-568.58.

    Amends the proposed changes to GS 90-87 which become effective either December 1, 2019, or 30 days after the effective date of the US Department of Agriculture's adopted regulations. Now defines marijuana to exclude hemp products or hemp extracts, and include smokable hemp, except for hemp plants or parts of a hemp plant grown or handled by a licensee for processing or manufacturing into a legal hemp product (previously, excluded hemp, hemp products, hemp extracts and smokable hemp when the hemp is produced and used in compliance with the Article and rules of the Commission). Makes similar changes to the statute, effective July 1, 2021, to exclude hemp products or hemp extracts, and include smokable hemp except for hemp plants or parts of a hemp plant grown or handled by a licensee for processing or manufacturing into a legal hemp product. Also amends the proposed changes to GS 90-94, effective either December 1, 2019, or 30 days after the effective date of the US Department of Agriculture's adopted regulations, to remove  tetrahydrocannabinols in hemp and smokable hemp from the proposed exclusions from tetrahydrocannabinols, classified as a Schedule VI controlled substance (previously, excluded tetrahydrocannabinols in hemp, hemp products, hemp extracts, or smokable hemp). Makes identical changes to the statute, effective July 1, 2021.

    Amends the criminal penalties set forth in proposed GS 106-568.67, effective July 1, 2021, eliminating the Class 1 misdemeanor offense for knowingly or intentionally manufacturing, delivering, selling, or possessing smokable hemp. Makes identical changes to delete proposed GS 106-568.57(d), which was to be become effective December 1, 2020.

    Amends proposed GS 106-121(1a), excluding smokable hemp from the definition of the term cannabinoid-related compounds as used in Article 12 (regarding the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services' regulation of food, drugs, and cosmetics). Sunsets the proposed changes to GS 106-121 on July 1, 2021. Enacts identical changes to the statute, effective July 1, 2021, except changes a statutory cross-reference to the definition of smokable hemp, as enacted.

    Changes the effective date to Section 14, which amends GS 106-568.56 (civil penalties for manufacturing, delivering, selling, or possessing smokable hemp), requires quarterly meetings of specified entities to discuss best practices in the hemp industry, and requires the SBI to notify the specified Commission when the US DEA has adopted an approved immediate testing method for whether hemp is within the federally defined THC level. Makes these provisions effective December 1, 2019, rather than December 1, 2020.

    Eliminates the directives regarding the Environmental Management Commission's implementation of 15A NCAC 02D .1806 (Control and prohibition of odorous emissions).

    Further amends Section 10.24 of SL 2017-57 to sunset the NC Food Innvoation Lab Committee (as renamed) on January 1, 2020 (previously, set to sunset on January 1, 2025).

    Directs the ERC to study matters related to the decommissioning of utility-scale solar projects, including the need for performance bonding to ensure proper decommissioning and closure of existing or future-built solar facilities, the economic feasibility and availability of recycling solar panels, and a survey of other states' related regulatory requirements. Requires the ERC to report to the 2020 Regular Session of the 2019 General Assembly upon its convening. Defines utility-scale solar project, and includes the solar rays, accessory buildings, transmission facilities, and any other infrastructure necessary of the operation of the project in the term.

    Directs the ERC to study DEQ's process for the development and adoption of general permits for animal waste management systems for swine, cattle, and poultry operations, including whether the general permitting process should comply with the APA. Identifies entities the ERC must seek input from, including representatives of farmers and environmental protection and natural resource conservation groups. Directs ERC to report to the 2020 Regular Session of the 2019 General Assembly upon its convening. 


  • Summary date: Jun 17 2019 - More information

    Senate amendment to the 4th edition makes the following changes. 

    Deletes Section 26 of the act, which enacted new Article 9, Right to Repair Act, in GS Chapter 75.


  • Summary date: Jun 12 2019 - More information

    Senate committee substitute to the 3rd edition makes the following changes. 

    Amends GS 105-277.4 as follows. Only requires the assessor to provide written notice of a determination that the properly has lost its eligibility for present-use value classification to instances where eligibility is lost for a reason other than failure to file a timely application required due to transfer of the land. No longer requires the notice to be provided separately from a regular yearly tax notice or tax bill. Deletes duplicate language. Adds that a new appeal to a decision of the assessor regarding the disqualification of property for which notice was received is not required to be submitted for subsequent tax years while the appeal of that disqualifying event is outstanding. Provides that when a property's present-use value classification is reinstated upon appeal of the disqualifying, it is reinstated retroactive to the date the classification was revoked. Deletes the provision providing that if no notice is given to the owner regarding the subsequent decision to disqualify, a reinstatement of the property by the specified entities is deemed effective for any assessments occurring from the date of the assessor's decision under appeal to the date of the final decision of that entity to reinstate the property. Makes the changes to GS 105-277.4 effective when the act becomes law (was, effective for taxes imposed for taxable years beginning or or after July 1, 2019). 


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