Dara Kam - News Service of Florida

Dara Kam is the Senior Reporter of The News Service Of Florida.

Civil rights groups are hoping a federal judge will strike down a new Florida law that they say does not properly carry out a constitutional amendment restoring voting rights to felons who have completed their sentences.

More than 100 inmates condemned to death could face a major upheaval, as a revamped Florida Supreme Court ponders whether to undo a 2016 ruling that allowed nearly half of the state’s Death Row prisoners to have their death sentences revisited.

After paying billions of dollars to settle lawsuits about the dangers of cigarettes, the tobacco industry is engaged in another public-relations battle, one that is swirling in the Florida Capitol, other state houses throughout the country and in Congress. 

State health officials are preparing to revamp the application process for medical-marijuana businesses, with the hope of issuing up to seven new licenses before the end of the year, Gov. Ron DeSantis’ office told The News Service of Florida on Thursday. 

State health officials have dropped an appeal of a Tallahassee judge’s ruling and agreed to allow Florida’s largest medical marijuana operator to open more dispensaries than a state law allowed. 

With plenty of breathing room before a March 15 deadline set by Gov. Ron DeSantis, House and Senate leaders have neared completion of a measure that would do away with a state ban on smoking medical marijuana. 

Baby steps.

Florida policymakers readily admit that’s the approach they’ve taken when it comes to dealing with pot, both before and after voters overwhelmingly approved a constitutional amendment legalizing medical marijuana. 

Florida legislators are ready to vote on measures that would allow patients to smoke medical marijuana, boosting chances of approval before a mid-March deadline set by Gov. Ron DeSantis. 

Citing a “tremendous safety threat,” Florida Chief Financial Officer Jimmy Patronis is asking President Donald Trump to use his executive power to allow banks to do business with state-authorized medical marijuana companies. 

Florida House leaders have rolled out a proposal that would allow patients to smoke medical marijuana, but only after going through what one critic called a “bureaucratic mess of red tape.” 

Siding with Florida’s largest cannabis operator, a circuit judge for the second time struck down a law capping the number of dispensaries medical marijuana businesses can run.

Siding with Florida’s largest cannabis operator, a circuit judge for the second time struck down a law capping the number of dispensaries medical marijuana businesses can run. 

A high-profile effort to repeal the state’s ban on smokable medical marijuana morphed Monday into legislation that, according to the proposal’s author, would be worse for patients than doing nothing at all. 

Whether Florida lawmakers will do away with the state’s prohibition against smoking medical marijuana remains up in the air, despite an ultimatum issued by Gov. Ron DeSantis.

Saying they failed to heed the will of voters, DeSantis this month ordered lawmakers to eliminate a ban on smokable medical marijuana and, if they don’t comply, threatened to drop the state’s appeal of a court ruling that found the prohibition violated a 2016 constitutional amendment.

Gov. Ron DeSantis still wants to eliminate Florida’s ban on smoking medical marijuana, but he’s walked back his opposition to a state system that resulted in what the new governor this month called a cannabis “cartel.” 

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