Two Proposed Recreational Cannabis Movements Gain Traction in Florida:
Which is the Best Option for Florida Residents?
While many Florida residents eagerly await the legalization of Recreational Cannabis, many of them fear hazy legislation that could impose harsh restrictions. Both the “Make It Legal Florida” and “Regulate Florida” petitions have gained notoriety with television and radio commercials, and mailers placed in boxes. The struggle between these two powerhouse movements has left the general public confused about which option to back.
“Make It Legal Florida”
We aren’t here to sugarcoat anything. The proposed Make It Legal Florida Amendment is notably backed by large donations from Medical Cannabis Dispensary giants, “MedMen” and Parallel (formerly Surterra). If you are curious as to why large dispensary companies are backing a Recreational Cannabis petition, you aren’t alone. To be frank, the answer becomes obvious when reading the fine print of this amendment.
While Make It Legal Florida would promote Recreational Cannabis and effectively make the plant legal to possess for individuals age 21 or older, it also imposes restrictions that aim to ensure that growing Cannabis at home remains an illegal act. This legislation seeks to maintain Florida’s current licensing structure, which we previously dissected. We exposed several cracks in the Vertical Market structure that left many patients feeling jipped.
This proposed petition also suggests allowing existing license holders, or MMTCs (dispensaries), to cultivate and sell Recreational Cannabis. Many patients of Florida’s Medical Cannabis System argue that current dispensaries can’t “keep up” with patient intake volume. How could they possibly support an influx of recreational users as well?
The legislation proposed in Make It Legal Florida would bar residents from growing Cannabis. Consequently, many individuals feel that the right to grow Cannabis has been a long infringed upon right. Medical Patients have argued since 2016 that this system is unfair and impossible to maintain for individuals on a fixed income, on disability, or on retirement funds. The cost of the product, Cannabis, in Florida is astronomical compared to states such as Colorado California Oregon Washington or Nevada. “Home grow” would allow individuals who cannot afford the overpriced product to cultivate their own in a safe and secure manner.
Surprisingly, this option for Recreational Cannabis takes a much different approach at legislation. The Regulate Florida legislation would allow legal recreational use of Cannabis by adults age 21+. However, it also suggests a complete breakdown of the current market structure. In this proposed system Florida’s economy would see an increase in career opportunities, due to an increase in available licenses.
Additionally, Regulate Florida would allow for adults age 21 or older to cultivate their own Cannabis at home. Many Florida residents believe this is a long infringed upon right rather than a privilege that citizens must beg for. Allowing individuals to cultivate Cannabis at home offers several benefits. Many individuals using Cannabis as a form of therapeutic relief can’t afford to even obtain a Medical Patient Recommendation. Much less afford the over-priced products sold in dispensaries. These individuals may be on a fixed income or living on disability/social security income. Allowing individuals to cultivate Cannabis at home allows them access to the product they need without the cost and hassle of a dispensary or Medical Card.
Deciding How to Choose
Both of these initiatives have gathered enough votes to garner the attention of the Supreme Court to review ballot language. Residents may have encountered a petitioner or two seeking signatures at events and rallies in local areas. Deciding which of these petitions best represents your beliefs is a lengthy process. It should include reading the FULL TEXT of both proposed amendments before settling. We encourage Voters to research these before making a final decision. Check out The “Make it Legal Florida” and “Regulate Florida” web pages to learn more.