The lawsuit against Florida’s medical cannabis smoking ban will move forward after a judge declined the state’s request to dismiss the case, according to a report from WTSP. The suit was filed by attorney John Morgan – who authored the voter-approved medical cannabis expansion law and was its primary financial backer – on behalf of several eligible patients.
The decision, rendered by the Second Circuit Court on Jan. 24, comes one day after the Thirteenth Circuit declined to dismiss a case contending that the state’s medical cannabis home grow ban is unconstitutional. That case, filed by strip club entrepreneur and registered patient Count Joe Redner, will go to trial.
In their bi-weekly update, officials say that those suits, along with at least two others, have “significant impact on the [Department of Health’s] ability to implement certain requirements” of the reformed medical cannabis program.
Tom Quigley, a representative of the Florida Cannabis Coalition said that the lawsuits have not only stalled the rollout of the revised medical cannabis regime but, if the smoking ban is upheld, it could impact efforts to legalize cannabis for adult use in the state.
“It would cause people to have to advocate and file additional lawsuits, which is really not needed because the amendment to the constitution has given these rights. This is a joke to the rest of the country that cannabis cannot be smoked… the process is slowed down and the patients are suffering right now.” – Quigley, to WTSP
According to Jan. 26 data from the state Department of Health, there are 71,720 registered patients throughout Florida; however, there are just 27 approved retail dispensaries and 13 approved medical cannabis treatment centers.
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