On June 16, 2014 in a prepared statement, Governor Rick Scott said, “As a father and grandfather, you never want to see kids suffer. The approval of Charlotte’s Web will ensure that children in Florida who suffer from seizures and other debilitating illnesses will have the medication needed to improve their quality of life. I am proud to stand today with families who deserve the ability to provide their children with the best treatment available.” With that and a signature from said governor, Bill 1030 became officially the first legalized marijuana law in the State of Florida.
Now, what exactly does that mean? What did this law really do? Can people now go on, find some Charlotte’s Web and light up?
First of all, don’t go and break out those lighters, “special” brownie recipes, or bongs* just yet. The Charlotte’s Web law legalizes strains of marijuana that are high in cannabidiol, or CBD, but low in tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the compound that actually produces the “high” commonly associated with marijuana use. Meaning that this newly legalized substance will not give the consumer the side effect they may be hoping for. Sorry, folks, this one’s just for actual healing purposes only.
In fact, only Florida growers who have been in business for at least 30 years can grow the plants, cutting off any newfound hope of opening your own Charlotte’s Web Grower Shop, and then the approved “marijuana” can only be distributed in oil form to permanent Florida Resident patients suffering from conditions such as epilepsy, Lou Gehrig’s disease, and cancer which cause either seizures or severe muscle spasms. (With the added bonus of keeping the consumers and their families’ identities protected, and doctors who prescribe this substance without “reasonably believing” the patient meets the criteria subject to a criminal misdemeanor offense.)
With this new law of compassion, or more appropriately one that is hoped to pacify the supporters of marijuana legalization, no one will be smoking anything, unless you count the “vaporizers” that can be used to consume the now legal marijuana oil (but I doubt many will think that actually counts.)
But, don’t despair, fair Floridian Resident. There is still the bill set for November 2nd which will broaden the legalization of marijuana substances.
For more details on the recently passed law, checkout this article.
*Possession of marijuana paraphernalia is still illegal, a first degree misdemeanor punishable by up to 1 year in county jail and a $1,000.00 fine.