Sen. Jeff Brandes filed legislation SB 614 on February 1 proposing a total recall of the state’s marijuana laws and revamping all the regulations governing the medical marijuana industry with a new set of guidelines.
According to Sen. Brandes, the overwhelming support received by Amendment 2 was a strong indication that the people of Florida demand a fundamental change to the way medical marijuana is regulated in the state. As per him, the existing state laws promote a state-sanctioned cartel system and are not right for Florida’s booming medical marijuana industry. Currently, the state has just seven license holders. This limits competition resulting in costlier pot.
As per Rep. Carlos Guillermo Smith, competition in the free medical marijuana market should be encouraged so that even minority-owned businesses have access to it. This, according to him, would help reduce the cost of medical marijuana.
Proposed legislation on marijuana
In November 2016, Florida voters passed Amendment 2 with a majority of 71 percent. On Jan. 3, 2017, Florida’s medical marijuana law or Amendment 2 took effect legalizing medical marijuana for patients with devastating medical conditions. Though Amendment 2 was implemented in January 2017, the marijuana industry has been riddled with uncertainties, as the state needs to revise rules pertaining to current dispensing laws and employment guidelines. The House has still not put forward the proposal to execute Amendment 2.
At present, Florida’s medical marijuana plan is vertically integrated and it includes nurseries that grow, process, sell, and deliver medical marijuana. The new proposed legislation or the Florida Medical Marijuana Act is aimed at eliminating statutory caps on Medical Marijuana Treatment Centers (MMTCs) and creating four new types of functional licenses for MMTCs including licenses for cultivation, processing, transportation, and retail.
The new proposal restricts medical marijuana retail facilities to one license per 25,000 residents, allows local governments to regulate zoning and safety standards, and prohibit stores from opening up in their community. It also opens the door for future growth of medical marijuana industry by removing current restrictions including how long a company needs to be in business or how much medical marijuana they can grow.
New legislation is a step in the right direction
As per the supporters of medical marijuana, the proposed legislation is a step in the right direction for the future of pot in Florida. As per Ben Pollara, campaign manager at United for Care campaign, Sen. Brandes’ bill does an excellent job of establishing a comprehensive and tightly regulated system in Florida. He added that the proposed bill maintains the preeminence of doctor certification while expanding the marketplace to magnify patient access to medical marijuana.
However, Sen. Brandes is not the only one aiming to revamp the entire medical marijuana industry in Florida. In January 2017, Sen. Rob Bradley had filed a legislation SB 406 that aimed at allowing growth of MMTCs once the number of registered patients hit a certain number. On Jan. 31, 2017, Senate President Joe Negron said that they were going to have a number of different approaches in the Senate and that it is his intention that those bills move forward.
Road to recovery
Addiction to any kind of drugs can lead to severe health consequences. However, a comprehensive detox program can help in removing the harmful toxins accumulated in the body due to a prolonged abuse of drugs and also assist in managing withdrawal symptoms during the detoxification process.
If you know someone who is addicted to drugs such as marijuana, help them get access to a professional detox treatment at a certified treatment facility. At the Florida Detox Helpline, we can help you or your loved one find the finest detox facilities in Florida. Call us at our 24/7 helpline number 855-920-9869 or chat online with our representative to know about the best Florida detox centers.