Friday, August 19, 2022

Florida Stands To Lose Millions Opposing Smokable Marijuana

When Florida’s medical cannabis legislation went into effect, it granted patients the ability to consume cannabis for medical use—they just couldn’t smoke it. Much of Florida’s medical marijuana roll out has been obtuse and misguided, but this point is perhaps the most contentious.

It was seen as willful opposition to the 71 percent of Florida residents who voted to legalize medical marijuana in the state. It also caused noted cannabis activist and influential Orlando attorney John Morgan to file a lawsuit against the state until they revise the law to allow “medical use” to include smokable marijuana.

By redefining the constitutionally defined term ‘medical use’ to exclude smoking, the Legislature substitutes its medical judgment for that of ‘a licensed Florida physician’ and is in direct conflict with the specifically articulated Constitutional process,” Morgan’s lawsuit charges.

Now state representative Carlos Guillermo Smith believes Florida could lose millions in taxpayer money fighting the lawsuit. Part of the reason Florida fears smokable marijuana, Smith alleges, is because the state fears it cannot properly regulate the sale of whole flower medical marijuana.

“Litigation will cost the state [and taxpayers] millions of dollars,” says Smith, who also sponsored a marijuana decriminalization bill last session.

Florida’s next legislative session will commence in about two weeks, where the state will decide if it wants to amend the law or follow Morgan all the way to court.

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