House, Senate near repeal of pot smoking ban

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.

Sen. Jeff Brandes and Rep. Ray Rodrigues confirmed Wednesday they’ve reached an accord on a proposal that would allow patients to purchase up to 2.5 ounces of marijuana for smoking every 35 days, ban smoking of medical marijuana in public places and allow terminally ill children to smoke the treatment, but only if they have a second opinion from a pediatrician.


Florida lawmakers file bill to legalize recreational marijuana for adults 21 and over

HB 1117 was filed by Reps. Carlos Guillermo Smith, D-Orlando, and Michael Grieco, D-Miami Beach, on Tuesday. The proposal allows people who are 21 years old and above to "use, possess and transport" up to 2.5 ounces of marijuana and have marijuana accessories.

The bill would also lets people possess, grow and cultivate up to six marijuana plants, including seedlings, and possess the marijuana produced by the plants.

The representatives say the measure will create a path toward full access to cannabis in Florida and a structure for its sale and taxation. Recreational marijuana is currently legal is 10 states.


Florida Democrats introduce bills to legalize recreational marijuana

Two house Democrats in Florida introduced two bills earlier this week that would legalize and tax adult-use cannabis in the Sunshine State.

State representatives, Michael Grieco (D-Miami Beach) and Carlos Guillermo Smith (D-Orlando) introduced the two bills, House Bill 1117 and House Bill 1119, only a few days after lawmakers introduced bills that would honor medical cannabis patients from out of the state. The two representatives are hoping that the bills will help to continue the conversation about legalization despite strong resistance in the state.


Florida lawmakers want to honor medical marijuana ID cards from other states

Florida lawmakers are pushing a bipartisan measure that would honor medical marijuana identification cards from other states. 

HB 557 and SB 1328 would provide "reciprocity" for qualified patients and caregivers who are not residents. The House measure was filed earlier in January by Rep. Ralph Massullo, R-Lecanto, and Rep. David Silvers, D-Lake Clarke Shores, while the Senate version was filed last week by Sen. Ben Albritton, R-Wauchula. 


Trulieve to bring Organa Brands products to Florida through SLANG partnership

Fresh off its successful IPO, SLANG Worldwide (CNSX: SLNG) has formed a strategic partnership with Florida-based Trulieve Cannabis (OTC: TCNNF) to offer cannabis patients in Florida access to leading cannabis brands in Trulieve’s dispensaries across the state.


Florida lawmaker proposes creating a state hemp program

With officials seeing a potentially lucrative industry, Senate Agriculture Chairman Ben Albritton, R-Wauchula, is proposing creation of a state hemp program.
Albritton on Thursday filed a bill that would set up the program under the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. The bill came after Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried last week named Holly Bell as the state’s first director of cannabis, a position that is expected to focus on building a hemp industry.
The bill also comes as agriculture officials say hemp production could help farmers and timber owners in Northwest Florida who sustained heavy damage in Hurricane Michael.


Potency of commercially marketed CBD products questioned

Independent testing reveals that many commercially marketed CBD-infused products contain lower percentages of cannabidiol than are advertised on the products’ label, according to an investigation conducted by NBC News in Miami.

Investigators submitted 35 commercially available products for third-party independent lab testing. “Of the 35 samples … tested, 20 of them had less than half of the amounts of CBD advertised on the label,” NBC reported. Some samples, such as a package of infused gummies claiming to contain 1,000 mg of CBD, contained no cannabidiol.


Lawsuit filed to remove hemp from state controlled substance list

Even though its being sold in stores as oil, lotion, or even candy form, hemp is currently on the controlled substances list in Florida. But as Blaise Gainey reports advocates are requesting the state remove the substance from the list.


Florida moving to allow smokable medical marijuana

The Florida House began moving a bill Tuesday designed to comply with Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis' demand that lawmakers repeal a ban on smokable medical marijuana by mid-March, but there remain differences with a similar bill moving in the Senate.

The House Health and Human Services Committee approved a bill on a 14-2 vote that would allow doctors to prescribe smokable marijuana. The bill restricts its use to pre-rolled, filtered marijuana cigarettes. A Senate bill being heard in its second committee stop later Tuesday has significant differences.


Florida Senator urges free medical marijuana cards for veterans

The expansion of cannabis access is moving forward by fits and starts in Florida. But for one state senator, a key group of the state’s residents are still being underserved by current regulations. On Wednesday, Gary Farmer, a Broward County Democrat, pushed for the elimination of the $75 annual fee for medical marijuana identification cards for veterans.

In front of the state Senate’s health care appropriations committee, Farmer expressed his dismay that Florida’s 1.5 million vets “should have to pay for the right for the eligibility to get legal medical treatment,”  reports Orlando Weekly.


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