Stirring the pot; Sen. Seum files recreational marijuana bill, calls for Bevin to "open his mind"

01/17/2018 04:05 PM

FRANKFORT — Sen. Dan Seum, R-Fairdale, is the latest member of the General Assembly to file legislation to allow the use of marijuana in Kentucky.

In a Capitol press conference on Wednesday, following Tuesday night’s budget address, Seum said marijuana, casino gaming and sports wagering could bring hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue to the state.

Seum told members of the media he had used marijuana after a surgery to relieve pain rather than using opiates prescribed by a doctor, and he asked Gov. Matt Bevin, R-Kentucky, to be “open minded” when considering the approach to new revenue.

The Republican state Senator also “challenged” Bevin to sign an executive order allowing casino gaming in Kentucky.

Bevin’s office did not respond to a request for comment. The Republican Governor has been vocal about not being in favor of recreational marijuana.

Seum said the bill, Senate Bill 80, would regulate the growth, possession, use, processing and transfer of marijuana in Kentucky. The legislation would limit individual purchase to an ounce of cannabis flowers, 5 grams of concentrated cannabis and three immature plants.

The legislation would also establish types of cannabis businesses, including: cultivation facility, manufacturing facility, testing facility and retail sale facility. The bill also establishes a taxing structure for cannabis in Kentucky, and enforcement agency; paid for through fees on new cannabis businesses.

Seum said the bill has a 50/50 chance this session, but thought there was a better chance at a bill allowing medical usage filed in the House to succeed this session.

Nick Storm

Nick Storm is the Anchor and Managing Editor of Pure Politics available exclusively on Spectrum News. Pure Politics is the only nightly program dedicated to Kentucky politics. Nick covers all of the political heavyweights and his investigative work brings to light issues that might otherwise go unnoticed, like his coverage of the backlog of DNA rape kits waiting to be tested in Kentucky. Nick is also working on a feature length bio documentary Outlaw Poet: A documentary on Ron Whitehead. Pure Politics airs weeknight at 7 and 11:30 on Spectrum News. Follow Nick on Twitter @NStorm_Politics. Nick can be reached at 502-792-1107 or nicholas.storm@charter.com.

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