Just a little over two weeks after an appeals court ruled that the smokable hemp retail ban was unlawful, the court has now issued a permanent injunction on the ban of the manufacture of smokable hemp.
This means that Texas is in the clear again to produce and manufacture smokable hemp products in the state of Texas. The previous temporary injunction was considered void on technicality issues with the wording involved. Several law firms have been involved with the case since the hemp law of HB1325 was passed in 2019. The groups awaited the official word from DSHS in 2020, to file their claim.
Judge Livingston ruled,
“Plaintiffs’ Emergency Motion for Leave to Amend Pleadings is granted. The
Amended Pleading operates no surprise or prejudice to the Defendants. Plaintiffs
raised the rule invalidity because the statutes’ unconstitutionality in their
amended petition: “For the reasons staled above, the rule is invalid and cannot
be applied to Wild Hempettes insofar as the Legislative Ban violates Tex. Const
art. XI,§ 19.” Pl. ·s Am. Verified Pet. at ¶75. This position echoes the position of the
plaintiffs since early on in the case and throughout the trial on the merits.“
The defendant in the case, Charles Eldred of the Attorney General’s office was found in the ruling to have taken no action to clarify the claims and filed no special exceptions. Leading to the conclusion by the ruling that defendants cannot claim surprise or prejudice to the amendment that the plaintiffs seek. And that the defendants’ motion for summary judgment is denied.
The response after the ruling two weeks ago was that of people being dumbfounded by what they considered “strange” or “bizarre logic.”
Chelsie Spencer, of Ritter Spencer, working on the case said, “Our team is pleased that the trial court upheld the economic liberty of Texas-based manufacturers, processors, distributors, and retailers.”
She further noted that the Texas legislature had no reason to favor out-of-state businesses and punish Texas-based businesses. And that with this ruling, our hemp industry here in Texas can continue with smokable hemp operations in Texas.
Members of online hemp and cannabis circles noted that it made no sense, “That one could sell it in Texas, but could not make it in Texas, and that the companies could leave Texas and then sell the same product they made before back to Texans legally.”
Susan Hays, who was also working as an attorney on the case stated, “the court’s ruling indicates the state had no reasonable justification for the ban. When the government tries to ban making an honest living they better have a damn good reason.”
Judge Livingston finished this ruling stating, ” Now that you have my ruling, please prepare a final judgment, and submit it for signature at your earliest convenience”
Chelsie Spencer says that it is expected that the state will appeal the decision.
As more news and information becomes available on when a final judgment can be expected, TCC will keep you posted. Make sure you subscribe to get an email every time we post up news. Or join our social network Community to get notifications on your mobile.