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Tampa Criminal Lawyer > Blog > Drug Crimes > This Year In Florida Cannabis Legislation

This Year In Florida Cannabis Legislation


You wouldn’t know it from the smell of weed wafting from every living room and every pool deck in Tampa, but cannabis is still mostly illegal in Florida.  So much has changed with cannabis laws that it is understandable that you can hardly keep track of all the latest developments, even if you have not been high the entire time.  This year, things could change even more.  Legislators have been having heated discussions about the legal status of cannabis, even as Floridians have happily been lighting up their joints, unfazed by all of this political posturing.  So far, it seems like Florida is unlikely to impose any additional restrictions on cannabis, and the people of Florida may even get a chance to vote to legalize recreational cannabis at the state level.  Meanwhile, there are still plenty of situations where you can face criminal penalties even when the only controlled substance in your possession is cannabis.  If you are facing legal trouble for alleged illegal activities involving cannabis, contact a Tampa drug crime lawyer.

420 Ambivalent Florida: The Status Quo

Officially, federal law still considers cannabis a Schedule I controlled substance, illegal for prescription or for medical research, as illegal as heroin.  There is talk at the federal level of moving it to Schedule III, where widely prescribed drugs such as suboxone and anabolic steroids reside, but that has not happened yet.  Since its 2016 launch, Florida’s legalized medical cannabis program is robust, with dispensaries popping up everywhere.  Tampa and several other cities in Florida have decriminalized possession of small quantities of cannabis for adult recreational use.  If you get caught smoking a joint in public, or if you have a small bag of weed but no medical cannabis card, you get a civil citation, the weed equivalent of a traffic ticket.

Will Floridians Vote for Recreational Cannabis This Year?

When you are high, the last thing you feel like doing is walking to the polling place or reading the instructions on your absentee ballot, but this November, cannabis enthusiasts in Florida may do just that.  A ballot question that lets voters choose directly whether to decriminalize recreational cannabis may end up on the ballot for the 2024 election.  Efforts to pose this question to voters have been in the works for several years, but they got caught up in legal red tape and did not make it onto the 2022 ballot.

High THC Concentrations Are Legal in Medical Cannabis for Now

HB 1269 and SB 7050 were two bills that would limit the THC concentration in medical cannabis products.  Both bills proposed to make it illegal for licensed cannabis dispensaries to sell oils, edibles, and marijuana leaves with a THC concentration greater than 30 percent.  Neither bill passed, so Floridians can continue to enjoy the world’s most mellow gummy bears.

Contact Tampa Criminal Defense Attorney Bryant Scriven

A criminal defense lawyer can help you if you are facing criminal charges related to cannabis.  Contact Scriven Law in Tampa, Florida to schedule a consultation.



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