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Florida Governor, Rick Scott, signed legislation during 2014 and 2016 that allows patients suffering from epilepsy, chronic muscle spasms, cancer and terminal conditions to legally obtain either low-THC cannabis or full strength medical marijuana.
However, Amendment 2 was passed by 71 percent of Florida voters during November 2016. The new legislation provides the state a larger framework for the future of cannabis. Governor Rick Scott signed the voter-approved legislation into law on June 23, 2017. Amendment 2 further allows people with HIV, AIDS, glaucoma, post-traumatic stress disorder, ALS, Crohn’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, and other similar conditions access to medical marijuana.
Although Florida has seven medical marijuana treatment centers already in operation, Amendment 2 allows for 10 additional centers by October 3, 2017. That is the deadline for the state to enact the new rules and laws. Many Floridians are hopeful that the state will allow many more dispensaries to open as laws evolve in the state.
Medical marijuana products can be sold as edibles, vaping, oils, sprays or tinctures. Patients may receive an order for three 70-day supplies before having to visit a doctor again to get re-examined. The bill still bans smoking marijuana, despite amendment supporters saying it is written into the language. John Morgan, who played a key role in getting the amendment on the ballot and passed, is expected to file suit over this issue in Leon County Circuit Court. Hopefully, medical patients can soon legally smoke marijuana.
Florida would be wise to look at the history of cannabis in states like Colorado, California, Oregon, Washington, and Nevada. Learning from the experience that each state has gone through. The state of Florida could be one of the best cannabis states, generating millions of dollars for taxes and creating thousands of jobs across the state if laws were loosened and allowed for cannabis dispensaries and grow facilities to operate throughout the state.
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