The Florida Legislature has passed its budget and gone home. But the manner in which lawmakers closed out this year’s session raises a number of questions about process, special session, and the veto pen.
The city of Tallahassee’s moratorium blocking new medical cannabis dispensaries ends this month. The city is poised to adopt new zoning rules for dispensaries. Leon County Commissioners approved zoning requirements Tuesday.
The Department of Health spent a week touring the state to get feedback on their draft rule for Amendment Two. The department’s cautious approach for implementing the medical cannabis initiative is raising the ire of would be patients.
In the upcoming legislative session, lawmakers will debate how to implement the state’s new medical marijuana regulations. 71% of voters approved a measure to allow more patients to access the drug. One of the top fundraisers behind the effort wants to see more competition in the industry.
One of the most contentious elements in Florida’s medical cannabis industry is who gets to grow and sell the drug. Lawmakers approved a limited number of companies to ensure security, but now some see the state’s seven growers as a cartel.
The Florida Department of Health and a Republican state senator are offering drastically different visions for the future of medical cannabis in the state. It could set the stage for a contentious rollout of last year’s Amendment Two.
Florida’s Office of Compassionate Use has six months to implement last year’s medical marijuana amendment. But the office seems ready to allow physicians to begin ordering the drug for newly eligible patients.
A proposed medical marijuana ordinance in Tallahassee appears to be undergoing some changes. During a public hearing on the ordinance Wednesday Commissioner Nancy Miller suggested shortening the timeframe for a proposed moratorium on new dispensaries in the city.
While state officials debate the best regulatory framework for medical marijuana in Florida, a more practical challenge may be on the horizon. The current list of doctors may not be enough to meet the demand of an expanding pool of patients.