medical marijuana

Second Bill Filed To End Marijuana Smoking Ban

Jan 29, 2019

With Gov. Ron DeSantis backing the issue, Sen. Jeff Brandes, R-St. Petersburg, filed a bill Monday that would eliminate a ban on smoking medical marijuana.

Associated Press

Florida’s new agriculture commissioner is looking for someone passionate about cannabis to fill a job that pays up to $120,000 a year.

And don’t sweat a drug test — it isn’t required.

Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried is creating a “director of cannabis” position that will focus on developing Florida’s hemp industry and implementing rules on edibles for medical marijuana patients.

IStock

Gov. Ron DeSantis announced last week that he has asked the Legislature to change Florida law to allow smokable medical marijuana. He also wants to reduce restrictions on who can grow and sell cannabis products. And the new Agriculture Commissioner has plans to create a Director of Cannabis position.

So far, it appears that newly sworn in Florida lawmakers are taking a sharp turn from former Gov. Rick Scott’s approach to try to limit access to medical cannabis in Florida.

SAMANTHA J. GROSS / Miami Herald

Republican Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis criticized the Legislature's implementation of a medical marijuana law and said Thursday that if they don't fix it quickly, he'll take matters into his own hands.

DeSantis wants a new law by mid-March that will end a ban on smokable medical marijuana and loosen limits on treatment center licenses, saying voters spoke clearly when they approved medical marijuana in 2016.

With one of his chief advisers tweeting the hashtag “NoSmokeIsAJoke,” Gov. Ron DeSantis said Monday he will “very soon” announce changes in how the state is carrying out a constitutional amendment that broadly legalized medical marijuana.

News Service Of Florida

Following a messy election, a fresh political season is set to begin in Florida. New state leaders will be sworn in Jan. 8, including incoming Florida Governor Ron DeSantis.

Although he still has a few decisions to make on key positions, DeSantis and his team have worked to fill hundreds of jobs in the administration, including for some of the state’s most prominent posts.

Meanwhile, state lawmakers are filing bills for the 2019 Legislative session that begins in March.

A new report shows medical marijuana use in Florida is steadily rising.

Report Details Growth Of Medical Marijuana

Dec 28, 2018
FLICKR

Despite a bumpy rollout that has drawn lawsuits and criticism from legislators, a new report shows the number of Floridians using medical marijuana continues to grow.

In the first nine months of 2018, more than 136,000 patients across the state received certifications from 1,070 physicians to receive medical marijuana.

State Fights Ruling On Medical Marijuana Law

Dec 26, 2018
medical marijuana
Flick Creative Commons via Mark / WLRN

Defending a 2017 law that set regulations for the state’s medical-marijuana industry, Florida Department of Health attorneys have asked an appeals court to overturn a circuit judge’s ruling that they say “injected confusion and uncertainty” into the licensing of marijuana firms.

In a closely watched case, an appeals court this week agreed to put on hold a circuit judge’s ruling that said Florida lawmakers and the state Department of Health have violated a 2016 constitutional amendment that broadly legalized medical marijuana.

STEVEN SENNE / AP

When Nikki Fried was elected commissioner of agriculture, proponents of marijuana cheered because she was their advocate. But what does her newly elected office mean for the future of the cannabis industry in Florida?

The agriculture commissioner historically doesn’t really have much influence. The responsibilities of the commissioner, Fried, and those who work in the department include the regulation of pesticides, edible medical marijuana and, more notably, hemp production.

JOSE A. IGLESIAS / MIAMI HERALD

Weapons. Water. Weed. Nikki Fried successfully campaigned on those "three W's" to become Florida’s new agriculture commissioner. The former lobbyist defeated Republican challenger Matt Caldwell in an extremely tight race that went to a manual recount. The margin of victory was only 6,000 votes or .08%.

Fried has an ambitious and progressive policy platform but faces some difficult challenges. She will be the lone Democrat elected to Florida's cabinet and expects to face pushback on policies related to gun control and climate change.

Arguments Set In Marijuana Smoking Case

Nov 23, 2018

An appeals court will hear arguments Jan. 8 in a legal battle about whether a ban on smoking medical marijuana violates a 2016 constitutional amendment.

Police in South Florida say a 66-year-old doctor is accused of giving patients medical marijuana cards without meeting them in person, conducting physical exams or requiring a debilitating medical condition.

Less than three hours before a 5 p.m. deadline, Gov. Rick Scott’s administration Friday filed a notice to appeal a Tallahassee judge’s order that struck down a 2017 medical marijuana law as unconstitutional.

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